Portslade man sentenced for laundering drugs cash

Posted On 05 Dec 2012 at 8:43 pm

A man from Portslade has been spared a prison sentence after he admitted laundering almost £10,000.

Richard Sutton, 37, of Lincoln Road, Portslade, was sentenced at Lewes Crown Court to 12 months in prison, suspended for 18 months, and 200 hours of unpaid work.

Judge David Rennie also served Sutton with a confiscation order when he sentenced him today (Tuesday 4 December).

Sutton pleaded guilty to money laundering at Hove Crown Court on Tuesday 6 November, having been found with £9,900 in cash on Friday 30 December last year.

He was stopped by police as he drove into Brighton from London on the A23 at Pyecombe.

He wouldn’t tell officers how he got the cash but officers from the Sussex Police Economic Crime Unit established that he had no legitimate working income and was on benefits.

Sutton had also recently been released from prison for burglary and drug related offences.

Police checked the mobile phones that he had with him and found messages that they said indicated that he was involved in drug dealing.

They searched his home and found evidence of a drug habit, they said.

Detective Sergeant Mick Richards, from the Sussex Police Economic Crime Unit, said: “In order for there to be a conviction for money laundering, we must satisfy the court that there is an irresistible inference that the cash came from the proceeds of crime.

“In this instance, we said that the monies were drug related and as such were criminal property, and the court accepted this.”

Judge Rennie told Sutton: “You have a bad record.

“I am giving you a chance by suspending this sentence, but any breach and you will be effectively sending yourself to prison.”

Half of the £9,900 that was confiscated will go to the government with the other half being split equally between the police, the Courts Service and Crown Prosecution Service.

Sussex Police said that it will use its share to support the work of the force’s financial investigators and as donations to local crime reduction and diversion projects.


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