Corby drug dealer has to sign over his ill-gotten gains

He faced a Proceeds of Crime Act hearing

Friday, 14th May 2021, 7:00 am
Robert Stuart.

A drug dealer from Corby who lived the life of luxury will have to sign over his ill-gotten gains and the designer gear he splurged on.

Robert Stuart, 20, was locked up for four years in 2020 after police caught him with pills and thousands in cash in two raids just six months apart.

He promised his customers he had the "best deals about" and used the cash he made to buy designer shoes and a watch as well as splashing out in Selfridges.

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But he will now have to pay back almost £40,000 which he earned through his criminal activity or face an extra six months behind bars.

On Wednesday (May 12) a brief Proceeds of Crime Act hearing at Northampton Crown Court heard the benefit from his crimes was £43,422.47.

The assets he had available amounted to £38,325, the court heard, made up of cash and expensive goods - all of which is currently in the possession of police and will be sold.

His Honour Judge David Herbert QC made a confiscation order for £38,325 meaning Stuart, who appeared over videolink from HMP Swinfen Hall, will have to sign over the goods so it can be paid back.

If he fails to do so by August 11 he will be sentenced to six more months in prison in default.

Last year's sentencing hearing heard two police raids at his Samuel Place home found designer items with class A drugs worth thousands of pounds and more than £14,000 in cash.

Officers first raided his home on December 12, 2019, and arrested him, with Stuart volunteering to them that they would find '500 pills in a black bag in a cupboard'.

Police seized cash, pills and crystal powder, found blue and pink pills in a zip-up holdall and recovered phones and lists of numbers scattered around the room.

Prosecutor Henry James told the court they also found expensive Nike trainers, Gucci baby shoes, an expensive TV, a Tag watch with a receipt for more than £3,500, a designer bag and keys to a Honda scooter.

Receipts revealed he had been on a spending spree since February and had splurged £24,644 - including more than £3,000 in one day in Selfridges - despite not having a job.

A grey Nike bag was also found with £11,290 in cash and more MDMA pills.

Stuart gave no comment answers and was released under investigation, but came back to the police's attention in February.

Officers saw a man in a balaclava riding a motorbike dangerously, overtaking a school bus, before riding to Alberta Close and across a pedestrian path where he lost control and fell off. The court heard he had been driving "like an idiot". Stuart was later sentenced to a community order and banned from the roads for dangerous driving.

He started to run after he fell off but was intercepted and two phones were recovered. One message sent from the phone said: "Best deals about. Doing drops all day anywhere in Corby. Just ask."

On June 30 police executed another warrant at his home where he told officers there was a rucksack with pills and cash in, which he was being forced to keep and store for others.

He said: "I am in a sticky situation. It's nothing like you found before."

In total, across the two raids, police recovered more than 160g of MDMA worth between £5,000 and £7,500 on the streets, and more than £14,000 in cash.

Stuart later admitted possession of class A drugs with intent to supply and possession of criminal property. He said he was given the opportunity to deal drugs to pay for his own cannabis habit and found it difficult to get out.