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Significant proceeds of crime victory

Lady Stacey has issued her opinion in a long-running civil recovery case involving Russell Stirton and Alexander Anderson.

The Scottish Ministers alleged in the Court of Session that Mr Stirton and Mr Anderson held property which had been obtained through unlawful conduct, in particular:

  • involvement in the importation of controlled drugs and a handgun;
  • involvement in unlawful conduct evidenced by possession of a large quantity of cash in circumstances redolent of involvement in controlled drugs;
  • extortion of money from a taxi firm;
  • laundering of money by buying cars using cash obtained from unlawful conduct;
  • obtaining money for the resale of the cars, and laundering money by developing a filling station using money obtained from unlawful conduct, operating and ultimately selling the filling station;
  • and fraud on lending institutions by falsely declaring income and ownership of assets.

Lady Stacey has decided that property sought by the Scottish Ministers, including Mr Stirton and Mr Anderson's family homes and other assets (independently valued in 2009 at over £900,000) were obtained through crime of the types described. Lady Stacey will pronounce a formal order transferring ownership of the property to a person nominated by the Scottish Ministers who will sell the property and remit the proceeds to the Scottish Consolidated Fund.

Chief Supt Wayne Mawson, of Strathclyde Police, said:

"Strathclyde Police also notes, with pleasure, the successful outcome to this very long-running and often complex case. Its result bears proper testament to the assiduous and exhaustive efforts of a large number of officers, and members of police staff, whose work went towards identifying and recovering the evidence to support the claim. The Proceeds of Crime Act offers a valuable tool to law enforcement agencies to see that ill-gotten gains do not remain ill-gotten. This case also offers a timely reminder that the police and other justice agencies will pursue the holders of such property for however long it takes."

 

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Thursday, 09 April 2020

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