Police recover £21 million from criminals in the past year, stats show

The money is put back into the community.
The money is put back into the community.

Financial investigators have reclaimed £21 million pounds worth of ill-gotten gains from criminals across operating in West Yorkshire and beyond.

The work is part of West Yorkshire Police’s Programme Precision - a new joint crackdown involving police, partners and members of the public to tackle serious and organised crime.

The £21 million is a record-breaking amount for the unit and Ramona Senior, who leads the team which also covers the North East, said: “These investigations can be extremely complex.

"Often other Forces will prosecute the case and we will provide expert evidence as we reclaim some of their ill-gotten gains.

“In cases like this it is important to remember the victims and what they have suffered. In many cases the offending is still quite raw and led to the collapse of some businesses and the loss of jobs.

“We often find that criminals are prepared to serve their time in jail but hate having their ill-gotten gains taken from them.

“Money seized from criminals is reinvested back into initiatives benefiting the community."

West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Mark Burns-Williamson said: “The positive action that West Yorkshire Police undertakes in seizing criminal assets cannot be underestimated, especially in terms of what it means for our local communities.

“Their relentless pursuit of those who bring misery to victims and communities means large sums of money are then available through my Safer Communities Fund (SCF).

“In the last financial year alone, I have been able to offer three grant rounds to the tune of £629,368, as a direct result of what is seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

“It means that we can tackle some of the most significant threats facing our county through the support of local groups and organisations, who are dedicated to ‘keeping West Yorkshire safe and feeling safe’ which is the vision of my Police and Crime Plan."