Commissioner's POCA Campaign Gains Ministerial Attention (14 Nov 2013)

The West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner has today (14/11) called upon Policing Minister Damien Green to allow West Yorkshire Police, and other Forces to keep the money generated from criminals via the Proceeds of Crime legislation.

Mark Burns-Williamson, who has spearheaded the campaign since his election, made the plea at the Association of Police and Crime Commissioner's Conference in London earlier.

Mark Burns-Williamson said the Minister agreed to consider his proposals:

"This is a significant step forward in my campaign to bring all the money seized from criminals back into our communities.

"Currently half of money recovered goes back to Government, and I have today brought this to the attention of Policing Minister Damien Green in person.

"He agreed to consider returning all Proceeds of Crime to our communities and possibly look at closing the loopholes in legislation to make sure we can do more to hit criminals where it hurts and invest more into tackling crime and its causes.

"Having previously written to the Chancellor the Exchequer, George Osborne on the subject, I am extremely pleased to see my proposal has been acknowledged in such a public forum.

"Over the last twelve months since I being elected, this campaign has received widespread support and I would continue to encourage people to sign my on-line petition. http://action.westyorkshire-pcc.gov.uk/page/s/giveusbackallthemoney

"The aim of the petition is to raise over 100,000 signatures which would also lead to the subject being discussed in parliament.

"Having visited all the Districts of West Yorkshire over the past two weeks as part of my 'Listening to You First' survey, I have spoken to numerous people who want to see the money recovered from criminal activity in the area they live, then spent in the area they live on policing or community projects aimed tackling crime.

"This money could be used by the police and local partners to achieve so much more and as Police and Crime Commissioner I will be continuing to highlight this issue at every opportunity until the right changes have been made. Everyone I have spoken to agrees with the principle of all the money generated through the Proceeds of Crime legislation being returned to the areas where communities have suffered from the criminal activity in the first place"

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT ANDY SMITH ON 07709398664

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