Community Projects from Proceeds of Crime

The government awards funding for local community projects out of some of the money recovered from the proceeds of crime.

For example, in Bedfordshire the public voted, and were granted funding for, the use of proceeds of crime to contribute towards community projects including:

  • a series of sports and community engagement sessions around Bedford borough culminating with a music festival at Easter
  • a static bus in the centre of Luton on weekend nights that is staffed by volunteers, ambulance and police to deal with anti-social behaviour and violence and provide expert medical care; and
  • a new youth club for local villages.

Recovering Proceeds of Crime

Chris Derrick - District Crown Prosecutor (Crown Court Team - St AlbansWe all know that crime doesn't pay. Prosecutors in CPS Thames and Chiltern are making sure that is true for those who have tried to make money from crime. In addition to the robust prosecution of offenders so that they are convicted and punished, we are also active in depriving them of the proceeds of their crimes.

Drug dealers, thieves, fraudsters and brothel keepers are among the main targets of the CPS team. We do not just look to take the profit, but the whole of a criminal's turnover. If some or all of that has been spent, any legitimate funds will be looked at to make up the difference.

Chris Derrick (pictured), Head of the Thames and Chiltern Complex Casework Unit, said: "We are hitting the criminals hard where it hurts - in their pockets. It can only be right that those who use crime to fund their lifestyles should be stripped of any financial benefit they get from it.  We work closely with the Asset Recovery Teams of Thames Valley Police, Hertfordshire Constabulary and Bedfordshire Police to recover the proceeds of crime from across the region to plough back into criminal justice system for the benefit of our local communities.

"The removal of criminal assets from offenders is a very important way of showing our communities that crime does not pay.  It is very satisfying to see the money coming to us and to victims, taking the profit out of crime."

CPS Thames and Chiltern has a team of Advocates trained to pursue confiscation of proceeds of crime in the Crown Court. They are supported by a network of expert financial investigators in the Police Asset Recovery Teams of Thames Valley Police, Bedfordshire Police and Hertfordshire Constabulary.

How are we doing?

In 20012/13 the Area obtained orders to confiscate assets from criminals to the value of £5,687,000.  This is broken down as follows:

Thames Valley - £2,680,000

Bedfordshire - £1,692,000

Hertfordshire - £1,315,000

Returning money to communities

Orders regularly range from £10s to £100,000s, taking funds from drug dealers on the street, all the way up their organisations and from large scale corporate fraudsters. The main aim is to take away all that they have received through crime and, where possible, ensure that victims of those crimes are compensated.

The money recovered is split between government and the rest is put back into improving the Criminal Justice System - including the CPS and police - for the benefit of local communities.