A convicted drug dealer has been ordered to repay more than Â£1m of his ill-gotten gains.
On Tuesday 28 May 2013, at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court, David Smith (13/07/1971), of Shirley Grove, Stockport was sentenced to 11 years in prison having pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine.
He was sentenced along with eight others following a year-long investigation into the Stockport crime gang and which resulted in the seizure of more than seven kilos of cocaine with an estimated street value of Â£681,402 and Â£531,356 cash.
As the key man of the operation, Smith would source high purity cocaine in kilo amounts that would then, through a network of safe houses, be adulterated, packaged and ultimately delivered to street dealers and abusers through a well organised network of mobile couriers.
On Friday 2 January 2015, Smith appeared at Minshull Street Crown Court for a Proceeds of Crime Act confiscation hearing.
He was found to have obtained Â£1,190,423 from his criminal endeavours and was ordered to pay back Â£1,074,988 within 6 months. Â If he fails to pay he will serve a default sentence of two-and-a-half years.
Prior to the hearing a house owned by Smith was sold for Â£500,000, the equity of which – Â£262,722 – will be paid towards the confiscation order. Â Other assets taken into consideration included another house valued at Â£160,000, over Â£477,000 in bank accounts, Â£66,000 in cash, four vehicles worth around Â£45,000, a caravan valued at Â£30,000 and jewellery (four watches and a ring) valued at Â£33,000.
The confiscation order is in addition to forfeiture orders obtained by GMP in relation to more than Â£500,000 in cash seized during the operation.
Detective Inspector Neal Colburn, said: “David Smith was the head of a sophisticated crime gang involved in the sale and supply of large quantities of drugs.
“It was an extremely profitable enterprise and for a time he reaped lavish benefits, including luxury homes, cars and personal items.
“What he didn’t factor in was our determination to not only bring him and his crime gang to justice, but to strip them of their ill-gotten gains.
“This is a notable and significant result and should act as a significant deterrent and warning to others involved in or thinking about getting involved in the drug trade.
“The trappings may at first seem appealing but the consequences are severe: not only do you stand to lose your liberty, but your home too.”