The Calderdale policing division of the West Yorkshire Police force has seized £400,000 from illegal activities in the past 11 months
The Proceeds of Crime Act department at Calderdale investigate and examine accounts to trace money made from illegal activities.
The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA) allows the police to confiscate or recover the proceeds of crime from a criminal. This could include money and other assets such as houses, vehicles and expensive items.
Money currently retained in West Yorkshire is used to help victims, prevent and tackle crime and support our communities.
The West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner uses the proceeds of crime for a community fund, known as the Safer Communities Fund, which gives grants to voluntary, community groups, charities and partners.
So far Mr Burns Williamson has given out over £700,000 to good causes.
West Yorkshire Police are encouraging groups or individuals through their “Why should they?” campaign to report anyone they suspect are living off the proceeds of crime.
The key message running throughout the campaign is that...there are criminals in the community who are living off the proceeds of their crime - at the public’s expense. Why should they?
Through POCA, an individual can now have their assets confiscated if there is a genuine suspicion that these were obtained illegally – and the individual cannot prove differently.
This can include the assets of family members if these can be linked in.
This is because confiscation through POCA is achieved through the civil courts, which requires a lower standard of proof than criminal court proceedings.