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Stephen Bear ordered to pay £22,305 Confiscation Order

|News, Proceeds of crime

Today at Chelmsford Crown Court, a Confiscation Order of £22,305 was given to Stephen Bear, to retrieve the ill-gotten gains he accumulated from publishing explicit content to a subscription site without the consent of those involved. The judge has ordered that the victim, Georgia Harrison, be compensated to the value of £5,000, which will be paid out of any monies paid towards the Confiscation Order.

Bear was convicted of voyeurism and two counts of disclosing a private sexual film on 14 December 2022 and was sentenced on 3 March 2023 to 21 months’ imprisonment. 

Stephen Bear
Stephen Bear

Following conviction, Specialist Proceeds of Crime lawyers at the Crown Prosecution Service worked to recover the money accumulated by Bear, to ensure he did not financially benefit from the crime. They were able to prove to the court in a previous hearing that Bear directly benefitted from £22,305 and not a much lesser amount that Bear had argued. 

The Confiscation Order imposed by the judge today condemns Bear to pay the money within three months, or he will receive a default prison sentence of an additional nine months to that already served. The Proceeds of Crime team will look to recover any future funds Bear earns until the full amount is paid.  Even if the default sentence is served, the Confiscation Order is still payable and can be enforced against Stephen Bear’s assets until it is fully paid.

Adrian Foster, Chief Crown Prosecutor for the CPS said:
“Stephen Bear has consistently shown no remorse throughout the proceedings, despite the knowledge his actions had serious impact on the victim. At every turn, he has sought to conceal his earnings and assets.

“I am proud of the efforts of the CPS Proceeds of Crime team, working with financial investigators from Essex Police, to prove the full financial benefit of Bear illegally uploading to the internet.

“Today’s Confiscation Order shows our determination to continue to pursue proceedings following conviction and ensure he has not profited in any way from his selfish actions.”

In the last five years, 2018 to 2023, over £480 million has been recovered from CPS obtained Confiscation Orders, ensuring that thousands of convicted criminals cannot profit from their offending. £105m of that amount has been returned to victims of crime, by way of compensation.

Notes to editors

•    Adrian Foster is a Chief Crown Prosecutor within the Proceeds of Crime Division of the CPS Serious Economic Organised and International Directorate (SEOCID)
•    Stephen Bear (DOB 15/01/1990). On 13 December 2022 at Chelmsford Crown Court he was found guilty of one count of voyeurism and two counts of disclosing a private sexual photograph or film.
•    He was sentenced to 21 months’ imprisonment on 3 March 2023.
•    The victim, Georgia Harrison, has waived her right to anonymity and spoken publicly about the case.
•    Where a defendant refuses to pay their Confiscation Order in a timely way, CPS Proceeds of Crime Division can invite the court to impose an additional default sentence on them of up to 14 years' imprisonment. The full debt continues to be in force until it is paid, and interest is
•    Where they are found to have additional available assets in the future, the CPS may ask the court to revisit the order and make an additional Confiscation Order up to the value of their full criminal benefit

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