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JAILED: Maidstone drug dealer will pay back thousands

Thursday 13th May 2021

A MAIDSTONE drug dealer has been ordered to pay back more than £9,000 after being jailed for five years.

Ashley Nation, 36, of Tonbridge Road, pleaded guilty to a string of drugs supply charges including supplying cocaine, MDMA and cannabis.

A confiscation hearing found Nation had illegal earnings of £9,174, which included money in bank accounts, cash, designer clothing and footwear.

Nation has three months to pay back the money or faces a further six months in prison.

Police searched his flat and found an array of high value goods, many still boxed, as well as almost £3,000 in cash.

A Kent Police spokesman said: "Plastic packaging had been flushed down a toilet and white residue powder was visible around the toilet bowl.

"Just weeks later a second search warrant was carried out at the same flat. Nation was again arrested, and a number of high value goods valued in excess of £30,000 were seized."

A car parked nearby was also searched which led to the discovery of quantities of cannabis and cocaine.

Nation pleaded guilty and received a prison sentence of four years and nine months. 

Detective Inspector Annie Clayton said: "The Proceeds of Crime Act remains one of our biggest weapons against those who fund a lifestyle from crime. It enables us to claw back any ill-gotten gains from offenders, by allowing us to seize cash, cars and sometimes even lavish homes which may have been funded by crime."

An order was also made for Nation’s co-defendant Laura Hughes, 39, who had previously been convicted for converting criminal property.

 Hughes paid Nation’s profits from drug dealing into her bank account. She was found to have assets totalling £23,124 and was also ordered to pay these to the court, or face imprisonment.