A microlight aircraft that was bought by a convicted cannabis grower has been confiscated by police as part of a proceeds of crime hearing.
On Tuesday, October 21, Recorder Donnellan QC, ordered John Fyfe, 27, of Ridding Close, Corby to pay back £39,276 of his criminal gains.
This repayment will be made up of cash sized from his address and the proceeds from repossessing his microlight aircraft, VW Golf, Gucci watch and pilot’s headset.
Fyfe must pay this back within six months.
He was originally arrested on June 15, 2012, during raids at an address in Little Heath, near Penkridge.
A total of 368 plants with an estimated street value of up to £171,800 were found at Little Heath.
In January Fyfe pleaded guilty at Northampton Crown Court to charges of conspiracy to produce cannabis and conspiracy to supply cannabis between January 1, 2012, and June 16, 2012.
On Friday, May 17, this year Fyfe was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison.
Northamptonshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Adam Simmonds, said: This is the second time we have successfully confiscated a plane from a criminal gang. Those who involve themselves in criminal activity should be worried. Not only will we go after them, but also their assets.
“We have a successful scheme in place where community groups can apply for grants from money seized through POCA. This allows us to give back to the communities what criminals have taken. Details on how to apply for a grant can be found at www.northantspcc.org.uk.”
Detective Sergeant John Wooding, from the Financial Investigation Unit, said: “This is another example of the financial investigation unit carrying out an in-depth inquiry into the finances of an organised crime group and successfully confiscating their criminal proceeds.
“The aeroplane will soon be advertised for sale on the Northamptonshire Police eBay site. This site was set up very recently and is mainly for the sale of found and detained property, including some POCA cases.”
Majinder Bagria, aged 43, from Stafford, an accomplice of Fyfe’s was also part of the proceeds of crime act hearing. The value of his criminal activity was estimated to be £194,985. However, as there were no assets, a confiscation order of £1 was made.
The value of Fyfe’s criminal activity was estimated to be £166,592.
For confiscation funds recovered, 50 per cent goes to the government. The remaining 50 per cent is split between the police, CPS and the courts.