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Drug dealer ordered to pay back £900,000 in Croydon

November 11, 2014, 11:55 am

A 38-year-old man from Croydon has been ordered to pay back almost £900,000 that he gained through his criminal lifestyle as a drug dealer.

A confiscation order for £899,702.37 was issued against Afamdi Maduabuch Unaka (dob 19/06/1976) of Pampisford Road, at a confiscation hearing at Croydon Crown Court on Thursday 6 November.

Unaka was arrested on Thursday, 14 June, 2012, in central Croydon after police received a tip-off that he was involved in money laundering. He was found in possession of £10,000 cash and arrested on suspicion of money laundering.

Officers then carried out a search at his home address in Pampisford Road, and they discovered 86 packets of cocaine in a wardrobe in his bedroom, weighing 1.3kg, with an estimated street value of approximately £260,000. Unaka was charged the next day with possession with intent to supply class A drugs.

Although he pleaded guilty to the offence, Unaka claimed that he had simply found the drugs in a park but that he was not involved further in the drugs trade or dealing.

A Newton hearing was held on 25 October, 2012 and the judge concluded that Unaka played a leading role in the drug trade, but that he was essentially working on his own behalf and not for an organised criminal network. At the conclusion of the Newton hearing, Unaka was sentenced to seven years imprisonment.

Following his conviction, officers from the Met’s Criminal Finance Team began to investigate Unaka’s finances under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, with a view to confiscating any assets that he had gained through his criminal activity.

From statements and evidence seized at his home address, they discovered that he held various off-shore bank accounts based in Jersey and found evidence of overseas balance transfers to the USA, Nigeria and Peru.

The financial investigation lasted several months, and in total, officers identified that in the six years leading up to his arrest, he had benefitted by just over £1,000,000 through his criminal activity.

At the end of the confiscation hearing, Unaka was ordered to repay just under £900,000, which is due to be retrieved from his accounts based in the UK or abroad.

The £10,000 that was seized by police has also been confiscated as part of this.

The amount must be paid within six months, with five years further imprisonment if Unaka defaults on the payment.

Detective Constable Jim Cann, from the Met’s South West Criminal Finance Team, who carried out the financial investigation said:

“Unaka tried to claim that he had found the drugs in a local park and that he wasn’t normally involved in drug dealing. However, it was clear from his banks accounts, and his overseas travel statements we found that he was deeply involved in the drugs trade.

“It’s important that criminals are brought to justice, but it’s also important that they can’t profit from their crime after they’re released from prison and that the public gets to see that crime doesn’t pay.”

 
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