Drug farmer’s £60k payback

A West Hallam drugs farmer has been ordered to pay back more than £60,000.

Ian Hawkins was sentenced to three years in prison at Nottingham Crown Court in March 2012 after pleading guilty to producing cannabis.

At a hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act(POCA) on Thursday, November 29, a total £62,644 was confiscated by the court.

The case against the 48-year-old began when officers searched an industrial unit in Fields Farm Road, Long Eaton, on June 22, 2010. They arrested Hawkins when more than 600 cannabis plants were found growing inside.

As part of the investigation, police searched his High Lane East home and found £2,520 in cash.

At the POCA hearing at Derby Crown Court it was declared that Hawkins’s’ benefit from his criminality was £62,644.

He now has six months to pay back the money or faces a further 20 months in prison.

The cash found at his home had previously been forfeited by magistrates in March 2012.

A police spokesman explained: “The Proceeds of Crime Act means that anyone who profits from crime can lose the financial and lifestyle gains they have enjoyed.”