Updated: Jun 9, 2022
A private hire driver found guilty of drug trafficking was ordered to pay back £1 to the Crown despite benefitting from more than £600,000 in proceeds of crime.
Moses Irungu, 41, was sentenced to four and half years in prison at the High Court in Aberdeen back in April 2021 following an intelligence led operation that led to the seizure of over £350,000 worth of controlled drugs being taken off the streets.
The operation began in May 2020, during when officers searched properties in Edinburgh on Pilton Drive North and Steads Place. Twenty-two kilograms of amphetamine, two kilograms of heroin and £10,000 cash were recovered. Irungu was subsequently arrested in connection.
A further search at a property in Ferry Gait Crescent, Edinburgh, in June 2020 led to the recovery of items including mixing agent, crack cocaine and over £4,000 cash. A second person Nontuthuzelo Halana was also traced at this address and arrested in connection with this and the previous seizures.
Halana, 45, was sentenced to 8 months prison time at the High Court in Aberdeen last year.
The Crown raised an action to take any assets held by Irungu as a result of crime profits following the drugs seizures.
According to Edinburgh Live, a judge at the Edinburgh High Court was told on 23 May 2022 that a settlement had been reached in the case with Irungu. The judge said Irungu had benefited from crime by £613,245.
Irungu’s counsel Mark Moir QC told Lord Summers: "The available amount is £1 and a confiscation order should be made in the sum of £1."
Irungu was handed three months to pay the £1 confiscation order. The Crown can however seek further confiscation of funds if additional assets are later identified.