A man who was jailed after being found with a pistol and more than a hundred rounds of ammunition stashed in his locker has now been stripped of his assets.
Robert John Vincent (born 12/04/1981), of Stickens Lock Lane, Irlam, Salford, was convicted of possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and production of cannabis following a trial at Manchester Crown Court, Crown Square, and sentenced to 13 years in prison.
On 2 August 2012, a court ruled that Vincent made £44,779.51 as a result of his criminal lifestyle.
He was ordered to repay that amount within six months or be jailed for a further 18 months.
On 21 April 2011, officers from Greater Manchester Police's Major Incident Team arrested Vincent at his place of work - Robert Wiseman Dairies, Trafford Park. A search of his locker recovered a Glock 9mm pistol and 143 rounds of 9mm ammunition.
After a further search of his home, officers discovered a cannabis farm.
The gun and the ammunition were found during an investigation into a shooting in Wythenshawe on 11 October 2010, during which a 24-year-old man suffered a non life-threatening gunshot wound to his leg on Cotefield Road, Woodhouse Park.
As part of that investigation, Paul Taylor (born 07/07/1965), of Burbage Road, Newall Green, was found with a cache of high-specification weapons and hundreds of rounds of ammunition when his home was raided in January 2011, and later sentenced to 17 years in prison.
His girlfriend Kimberley Bray (born 16/01/1966), also of Burbage Road, Newall Green, was also convicted of possession of firearms and sentenced to eight years in prison.
Officers from Greater Manchester Police’s Financial Investigation Unit opened an investigation and discovered that Vincent, who was was employed as a HGV driver for the milk company, had deposited large sums of cash - roughly £30,000 - into his account not consistent with the amount he was legitimately earning.
Investigators further discovered that Vincent had spent large cash sums on expensive holidays to places such as the Maldives, St Lucia and Mexico, and even purchased champagne at airports before flying off.
His total assets at the time of his arrest were more than £44,000.
Detective Constable Mark Chesters, from GMP's Financial Investigation Unit, said: "When Vincent's home was searched by police, we discovered a large cannabis farm which we believe he was running in order to fund his lifestyle. We also discovered weapons, including a sword and machete, that we suspect were for protection should anyone try and disrupt his criminal enterprise.
"When we looked into his accounts, we discovered he really was living a champagne lifestyle, jetting off on exotic holidays and spending cash he could not have made from his legitimate income.
"What this hearing shows is just how far Greater Manchester Police will go to ensure that criminals do not profit from their illegal activity.
"Stripping them of their freedom is the first step, but we will go even further and strip them of their assets and ensure that when they do come out of prison, they don't have a nest egg built by criminal funds to rely upon.
"I hope this sends out a powerful message to the criminal fraternity of Greater Manchester. In Vincent’s case, what started out as being caught with a gun in a locker has ended with him locked up for more than a decade and now bereft of funds. I hope other criminals are reading and taking note."