Gold Helping Scotland's Young People

7 March 2016, 06:00

A hoard of gold and cash seized under proceeds of crime laws has raised almost 175 thousand pounds for good causes.

Valuable gold coins worth more than 16 thousand pounds were among the goods recovered by police after a high speed car chase in West Dunbartonshire in February 2012.

The seizure of the 19 South African Krugerrands, each containing around 31 grammes of gold, was a legal first in Scotland.

The coins were discovered after police attempted to stop a car being driven erratically on the A82 near Dumbarton.

A search of the car when it was finally brought to a halt also uncovered bags of cash alongside gold and jewellery.

Forfeiture of the valuables was granted in May 2015 on the basis of her partner's alleged involvement in drug dealing and money laundering.

Money raised from the sale of the goods will be handed over to the Scottish Government as part of the CashBack scheme, which takes funds recovered from the proceeds of crime and invests them into activities for young people.

Linda Hamilton, head of the Crown Office's Civil Recovery Unit, says ''This case demonstrates the powers of the civil courts to strip cash and valuables that cannot be legally explained.

''In this case a simple traffic stop has led to the first ever seizure of Krugerrands in Scotland under Proceeds of Crime, and the raising of almost 175 thousand pounds that will be spent on positive activities for children and young people throughout Scotland.

''We will continue to do all in our power to recoup the proceeds of crime and put it to good use for our communities.''

The majority of the gold and jewellery was sold after extensive police inquiries into its ownership.