The Asset Detention and Recovery Unit, part of GMP’s Economic and Cyber Crime Unit have forfeited over £3 million this tax year consisting of criminal funds following a forfeiture of over 300k at Tameside Magistrates court today (Tuesday 6 December).
The Asset Detention and Recovery Unit deal with the seizure of all cash and listed assets for example watches, cash and precious metals by conducting civil investigations that arise following these seizures with a view to forfeiting the assets at court.
The team work on the balance of probability where they prove through a thorough civil investigation that the money seized comes from or is intended to be used for crime. This ensures that the money seized does not get returned to criminals to spend in organised crime networks and further violence in Greater Manchester. The money we successfully forfeit is sent to the Home Office and through ARIS, GMP get just under 50% back to fund community projects and policing initiatives.
Where does the money come from?
- In September 2022, £8,000 worth of cocaine and £29,828 in cash found in search after two men were arrested in Salford for possession of class A drugs.
- In March 2022, the Economic Crime Unit executed a warrant in Norden, Rochdale in connection with money laundering and the supply of class A drugs. £26,060 found in cash at the address. The occupant was arrested for conspiracy to supply Class A and has since pleaded guilty.
- In August 2022, a delivery driver was stopped in Rochdale. A police dog searched the van and found a package in the rear of the vehicle. £58,650 in cash was found inside a Nike shoe box wrapped in plastic.
- In August 2022, following reports of assault police attended an address in Wigan, officers found a large quantity of Class A drugs, along with large quantities of steroids and human growth hormones along with £55,140 in cash.
Where does the money go?
Through the Asset Recovery Incentivisation Scheme run by the Home Office, part of the funds recovered by the Economic Crime Unit will be returned to Greater Manchester Police, to help pay for further asset recovery work and to fund community projects.
Some of the projects include:
- £70,000 to the Fitton Hill Bulldogs Community Sport Centre in Oldham to purchase an additional disability hoist within the clubhouse building, complete pitch drainage of 1 full size rugby pitch and 1 full size football pitch and will support pavilion refurbishments and strengthen external security provisions at the site.
- £50,000 pounds has gone to the GetAwayNGetSafe (GANGS) project which delivers early intervention aimed at young people to challenge attitudes towards gang culture, knife carrying and social responsibility. This has already been implemented at 20 schools in Moss Side, Wythenshawe and Longsight and due to its success, the funding is being used to roll this out across further areas.
Non-profits which benefit a large number of people can apply for a maximum of £20,000 to fund 12 months’ activities. The activities must support GMP’s objectives to fight, prevent and reduce crime; keep people safe; and care for victims.
Detective Sergeant Sarah Langley of GMP’s Asset Detention and Recovery Unit said: “Although we’re very pleased with this result, the fight to strip criminals of their finances doesn’t stop here. My team will continue to work diligently behind the scenes to remove criminal proceeds from the hands of those who seek to profit from criminality. By using all powers available to us through the Proceeds of Crime Act allows us to successfully disrupt criminal networks by targeting them where it hurts the most – their pockets”
Detective Superintendent Joseph Harrop of the Economic and Cyber Crime Unit, who is the Force Lead for Asset Recovery said: “This latest milestone demonstrates how, in line with our public promises, we will seize more assets from criminals. We continue to focus on forfeiting criminal assets to utilise their finances for a much better purpose.
“I would like to reassure the public that any information reported to us is dealt with in complete confidence and will be followed up meticulously. I would like to thank the public for their ongoing support in sharing information with our unit which helps us successfully disrupt criminal networks.”
Anyone with concerns or information about suspicious financial activity, should report to police online, if able, at the websited or via 101. Always call 999 in an emergency.
Details can be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.