Worthing woman loses £100,000 after drugs conviction Brighton News

A WOMAN convicted for her role in drug trafficking has been ordered to repay more than £100,000.

Barbara Varns, 61, formerly of Cheviot Road in Salvington, admitted possession of cannabis and amphetamines with intent to supply and two counts of possession of criminal property in her home.

She was jailed in October last year, with money, drugs and items confiscated at a hearing following an investigation by specialist financial investigators from the crime unit economic.

Court heard Varns was driving a van when she was stopped by Tactical Enforcement Unit officers on June 10, 2020.

Officers found £19,000 cash in her possession, which she had hidden in her handbag, and a small amount of amphetamines.

During a search of his home, officers found an additional £33,000 in cash, cannabis and amphetamines worth over £68,000, and over 3,000 items of cosmetics and clothing still bearing tags.

The Argus: Cosmetics and clothes with tags still on them were also found during a search of Varns' homeCosmetics and clothing still bearing tags were also found during a search of Varns’ home

None of the items could be identified as having been purchased legitimately.

Varns was convicted on October 28 last year at Lewes Crown Court for the offenses, with her case under the Proceeds of Crime Act being heard in the same court on May 23.

The court heard she had benefited from the sum of more than £166,000 of criminal property.

Lewes Crown Court found she had £103,189.51 in recoverable assets, which were forfeited under a forfeiture order.

Detective Inspector Mark O Brien from the Economic Crime Unit said: ‘This was a complex investigation involving frontline officers, Worthing CID and financial investigators.

“It shows our determination to explore all avenues available to us not only to catch criminals involved in drug and theft offenses, but also to deny them the benefits of their illegality.

“Varns pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply cannabis, possession with intent to supply amphetamine and two counts of possession of indictable property. She was sentenced to 9 months in prison.

“At Lewes Crown Court on 23rd May 2022 a hearing into the Proceeds of Crime Act took place and it was found that she had been awarded the sum of £166,400.67 with assets available to pay £103 £189.51. This is due within 6 months.

“The amount available is made up of the money seized, his vehicle, bank account balances held and items seized.”

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This notice was published: 2022-06-07 12:12:48

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