Smuggler must cough up £51,000 to atone for crime

09 August, 2007

One of four criminals sentenced last November for his part in a major tobacco fraud has been ordered to pay £51,000 within six months following a successful investigation by


Derek Neil Pattison was

charged with cigarette smuggling and money laundering . Pattison, a former factory worker of Burntwood, Staffordshire, will have to pay up or face a further two years in prison.

Customs' assistant chief investigation officer Eddie Jones said the order "sends a clear message to those who engage in this sort of crime - not only will they end up with a criminal record but, by working together, HMRC and the Revenue & Customs Prosecution Office will reclaim the proceeds of their criminal activity.

"We are extremely pleased that, through the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, the profits of this crime have been successfully returned to the public purse."

The haul of almost 1 million cigarettes was discovered by Customs officers last May as they were unloaded from a lorry in Walsall Wood in the West Midlands.

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