AN ORGANISED crime family, who illegally amassed nearly £2 million in cash and property, have nearly paid back the full amount.
Robert McGivern, 42, Bernadette McGivern, 72, Harold McGivern, 69, and Noel Healy, 80, were ordered to repay the money after police raided the Ponderosa scrapyard in Bridge End Road, Red Lodge in September 2008.
During searches at both residential and commercial premises, officers found stolen vehicles and plant along with £750,000 in cash. Part of the cash – £474,000 – was found hidden behind a bath panel, with a further £250,000 found in a Quality Street tin in a bedroom.
The repayment ends Suffolk Police’s three-year Operation Basil.
The force’s financial investigation unit worked alongside investigators to uncover an empire which included cash held in bank accounts in the UK and overseas. A property portfolio in the UK, Ireland, Europe, the Far East and Asia was also identified.
Andy Gould, of Suffolk Police’s financial investigation unit, said: “The recovery of almost £2 million in criminal assets brings to an end an investigation which started over three years ago.
“Although this was led by Suffolk Police, it also involved close partnership working with a number of other agencies and it was this approach which has led to such a satisfactory outcome.
“Yet again the Proceeds of Crime Act has been used to great effect by Suffolk Police to ensure that people who have profited from illegal activity over a number of years have been made to pay back the benefit that they have enjoyed from their involvement in crime.
Robert McGivern was jailed for five and a half years for money laundering, fraud and handling stolen goods in September 2009.
Bernadette McGivern, Harold McGivern and Noel Healy were given suspended sentences for money laundering offences in November 2009.
The recovered money is collected will be distributed among the agencies which worked on the investigation.
Suffolk Police expects to receive £380,000.