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19th Jan, 2022

West Midlands PCC looks to invest funds taken from criminals into community projects

Sarah Mason 7th Jan, 2022

WEST MIDLANDS Police recovered almost £3million from criminals in 2021 and the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) is looking to invest these funds into community projects.

The police force’s Economic Crime Unit had overcome the difficulties of the pandemic to retrieve money linked to crime, and targeting crooks who’ve benefited financially from their illegal activities.

But their work meant the force was able to carry out almost 180 confiscation or forfeiture orders under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) last year.

Those who don’t pay up face extended prison sentences, although the debt never goes away and officers are able to recover what is owed in the future.

Money which is recovered can compensate victims of crime or be invested into helping communities under the PCC’s Active Citizen’s Fund.

The PCC, Simon Foster said: “I’m so pleased to see our police force hitting criminals where it hurts most, in the pocket.

“If these individuals think they can break the law and profit from their illegal activity then I’m afraid they’re mistaken.

“I use this money to support community groups, via my Active Citizens Fund, meaning the proceeds of crime taken from criminals are used to tackle crime and support communities.

“For example, I recently awarded Wolverhampton Wrestling Club more than £4,400 to promote better mental health services in the area.”

To apply for funding visit https://www.westmidlands-pcc.gov.uk/active-citizens-fund/

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