Dealer’s £150,000 seized

POLICE have seized more than £150,000 from a convicted Leigh drug dealer.

James Thorne was caged for five years for possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply last month. Officers had raided his home to recover cocaine, MDMA and cannabis with a street value of up to £278,000 hidden in packages stashed inside a utility room cupboard and Thorne’s van.

During the search, police also seized a large suitcase with £151,900 in cash inside.

This week a forfeiture direction hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act – held at Manchester City Magistrates’ Court – ruled that GMP could seize the cash from the 25-year-old of Wilkinson Steet.

Det Sgt Paul Jackson said: “Thorne is a convicted drug-dealer who had more than a quarter of a million pounds worth of drugs at his disposal: drugs that could have found their way into our communities and caused serious damage had it not been for the positive action we took. We really hit Thorne where it really hurts: his wallet.

“As well as serving a lengthy jail sentence, we have also seized more than £150,000 worth of his drug money, taking it from his undeserving pockets and putting it back into our fight against crime.

“This is another good example of how police are using the POCA legislation to ensure that not only are convicted criminals locked up, but that we will continue to pursue them through the courts and strip them of any money, property or cars paid for as a result of their criminal ways.

“I also want to urge members of the public to look at what we have done to Thorne and see what we can do to criminals when we work together.

“Please, if you have any intelligence about drug dealing in your community, tell us and we will take action. “