Police vow to pursue more profits of crime from leader of Hartlepool drug gang
Police have vowed to pursue a gang leader ordered to pay back thousands of pounds after supplying cocaine and amphetamine across Hartlepool.
Tony Trott, 30, was jailed for 26 years in November for involvement in a conspiracy to supply cocaine across the North East and orchestrating an early-morning shooting at a family home.
Police monitored Trott and his associates’ criminal activity for months and observed drug and cash handovers throughout 2016.
He appeared at Newcastle Crown Court after police launched an application under the Proceeds of Crime Act to seize any assets he may have.
A judge ordered Trott, of South Terrace, Sunderland, to pay back £9,410 after the money was seized by officers. The sum must be paid within 28 days, or the defendant will face further time behind bars.
Detective Inspector Sally Macdonald, of Northumbria Police, said: “Tony Trott was brought to justice for his crimes in November last year when he was handed a significant custodial sentence.
“However, it is important that the public realise criminals like him – who are involved in sophisticated drugs operations – do not benefit from the funds made during their crimes.
“A financial investigation can be regularly revisited if we think an offender has come into money again and not paid off the total amount of their benefit order, which in Trott's case, stands at £203,270. As a result, we will continue to assess this case and take further action if more assets become available.
"We are committed to protecting our communities and pursuing criminals as part of Operation Sentinel, which is our collaborative approach to tackling serious and organised crime.”
After being convicted by a jury in June 2018, Trott, James Ratcliff, 35, of no fixed abode and Lee Barnett, 42, of Throston Grange, Hartlepool, were jailed for more than 66 years combined for their part in the attack.
Trott, Ratcliff and another man, Philip Steabler, 41, of Thorndale Road, Sunderland, were also convicted for conspiracy to supply cocaine across the North East.