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Hertfordshire's police have started using the auction website to sell goods they've seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
The Act gives officers powers to ask for confiscation orders for sums of money through the courts against criminals who have benefitted financially from their crimes. Police can then seize goods or money from the criminals.
By putting the goods on eBay, officers can make sure money can still be made from the goods even if the criminals have already spent the money they made from their crimes.
Hertfordshire Constabulary is one of the first forces in the country to launch an Ebay site, following Cheshire and Leicestershire.
Simon Hill, Financial Investigation Manager, said “Ebay is another powerful tool to help us sell seized items and so make sure crime does not pay for criminals.
“Criminals will often buy expensive items with the money they have made from drugs, burglary or similar. But, if we can seize these high value items and sell them on, we can still hit them in the pocket.
“We have seen some success already on Ebay, with 15 items sold since we joined Ebay in October and we hope to steadily increase the numbers of goods we are adding on there in the coming months.”
So far, sold items have included golf clubs, designer clothes and accessories, and jewellery. Items to be added in the future will include Louis Vuiton and Prada clothing, X Boxes, flat screen TVs and jewellery, including Rolex watches.
Money generated from the sale of these assets and the confiscation orders will go in compensation to victims of crime, as well as helping fund crime fighting initiatives in the county and beyond.
Simon added “I would like to encourage the public to help us hang criminals out to dry by buying items from our site."
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