Three men from Swansea who have already been convicted of drug trafficking and robbery offences, have had more than £6million worth of assets – including a Lamborghini sports car – confiscated during a Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) hearing.
The hearing, the latest linked to the Operation Tilbury investigation, took place at Swansea Crown Court on Friday, November 18, and considered three men from Swansea, who were part of a county lines criminal gang which sold illegal drugs. They were jailed in 2021 for a total of 39 years and three months after a 15-month long investigation.
Daniel Harris, 40, from Sketty was sentenced to 16 years; Leon Ley, 34, from Carmarthen Road in Swansea was sentenced to 11 years and three months; and Dale Martin, 28, from Townhill was sentenced to 12 years.
Drug-trafficking investigation, Operation Tilbury, was launched following a robbery which was found to be linked to an organised crime group flooding south Wales with Class A drugs. The criminal investigation was complex and resulted in the conviction of eight people for the drug trafficking and robbery offences. Prison sentences were handed down totalling 74 years.
In respect of all defendants the court was satisfied that the combined extent of their proceeds from criminal behaviour amounted to £6,018,395.85. As that amount is not currently available they have been ordered to pay a total of £267,957.06. South Wales Police will however seek to recover all funds in due course. Further confiscation orders are expected.
The final confiscation matter is pending with an anticipated benefit of £798,928.15 and additional recoverable assets of £264,501.56.
Confiscated assets included the Lamborghini and Range Rover as well as luxury caravans and cash.
Jo Williams South Wales Police’s financial investigator who secured the orders, said: “This result shows the fantastic work carried out by the Economic Crime Unit who have supported the investigation of Op Tilbury.
“The suspects were convicted previously and received substantial sentences, so to follow on with this incredible level of orders under the Proceeds of Crime Act is fantastic and really moves towards disrupting organised crime groups.
“We also secured an image of the number plate Daniel Harris was using back in 2011 when he was subject of another investigation, Operation Cougar. As can be seen, at that time his private number plate had the words ‘Crime Pays’, something which I’m sure he now regrets!”
Detective Superintendent Dean Taylor also stated, ‘Jo’s professionalism and determination in securing these orders and highlights the lengths South Wales Police will go to in our fight to disrupt Organised Crime, protect the communities of South Wales and make our area an uncomfortable place for these criminal gangs to operate.’