£85k seized from drug dealer

A MAN jailed for 56 months after officers found a kilo block of cocaine has had to forfeit almost £85,000 under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Joe Lee, 29, of Cranham Road, Little Waltham, was sentenced on Thursday, April 26, at Chelmsford Crown Court after admitting possession of a class A drug with intent to supply.

On Thursday, July 25, Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court found that cash found at his address, which had been seized, was the proceeds of crime and ordered that it should be forfeited.
After Lee lost an appeal against this decision, we are today, Friday, September 7, able to disclose the outcome.

Officers from Essex Police’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit carried out a warrant at Lee’s caravan on Tuesday, March 27.

During the search they found the kilo block, £31,520 hidden in a shed and £42,730 in a hole in the ground nearby. A further £10,700 was seized at the same time from a car.
DCI Lee Morton, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “Lee could not come up with a plausible reason as to the origins of so much cash. We believe it was ill-gotten and the proceeds of criminality.

“It is so important that we target those who profit from criminality, as the money is usually linked to crimes such as drug-dealing that cause misery in our communities.”

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