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Thousands of pounds seized from drug dealer in Worthing

A court has confiscated thousands of pounds from a Worthing drug dealer after he was jailed.

Charlie Burns was originally stopped by officers from the Tactical Enforcement Unit after he was seen driving erratically in a black BMW in Brougham Road on December 21 last year.

The 27-year-old appeared to be intoxicated, and officers saw powder around his nostrils. He gave a positive roadside DrugsWipe for cocaine.

A search of his vehicle revealed he was in possession of £23,900 in cash, and drugs worth about £9,000 which he had stashed in a bag by a baby seat.

A further search of an address found cocaine worth £100,000 hidden under a television cabinet, and more than £15,000 in cash.

At Lewes Crown Court in February Burns admitted possession of ketamine with intent to supply, possession of cocaine with intent to supply, and possession of cannabis with intent to supply. He also admitted two charges of acquiring, using or possessing criminal property.

He was sentenced to five years and two months in prison.

Following that hearing, Sussex Police continued with its investigation into Burns’s finances, where it was discovered that more than £100,000 in cash and third party payments had gone through his accounts in the two years before.

Burns, of HMP Lewes but formerly of an address in Worthing, appeared at a hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act at Lewes Crown Court on August 15.

It was revealed he may have benefited to the sum of more than £228,000 during the investigation period.

A sum of more than £44,000 was available and was seized by the court.

Detective Inspector Mark O’Brien from the Economic Crime Unit said: “Burns had led a significant drug dealing operation in Worthing worth thousands of pounds.

“He supplied class A and class B drugs which have caused so much harm to our communities.

“His conviction shows the hard work of police, including the Economic Crime Unit and Worthing CID, to ensure he had no choice but to plead guilty.

“Our financial investigation also shows our determination to pursue every avenue available to us to not only to catch criminals involved in drugs offences, but to also deny them the benefits of their illegality.”

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