Drugs lord who ‘bragged’ about owning Barrow AFC’s ground in court
Last updated at 16:09, Tuesday, 05 November 2013
ONE of Britain’s biggest drugs barons, said to have boasted he owned Barrow AFC’s ground, is back in court.
Curtis Warren, nicknamed “Cocky”, was once the most wanted man in Europe and even appeared on the Sunday Times Rich List in 1997 as a property developer.
The Bluebirds’ Holker Street ground was on a list drawn up by the Dutch authorities which also included buildings in Wales, Spain, Turkey and the Gambia, a winery in Bulgaria, as well as a yacht and 200 houses in Liverpool.
Warren has always claimed these allegations were ridiculous and claims he owns only two small flats and a house in Merseyside.
The hunt for Warren’s assets turned to Barrow, partly because of an incident related in Warren’s biography, Cocky.
In it he was said to have flown over Barrow AFC in a helicopter, pointed down to the Holker Street ground and said to the pilot: “I own that.”
Warren is also known to be a childhood friend of former AFC chairman, Stephen Vaughan.
In September 1996 Vaughan was arrested by customs officials over his alleged links with Warren. No charges followed.
Vaughan resigned as chairman of Barrow AFC on December 1, 1998. He has never denied being a boyhood friend of Warren’s.
Barrow AFC went into liquidation in 1999 with Stephen Vaughan as a creditor.
For the past two weeks Warren has been back in court in Jersey for a confiscation hearing. Unlike his drug convictions in 1997 and 2009, which led to long prison sentences, on this occasion Britain’s most notorious drug dealer is not standing trial, but still faces another 10 years behind bars if he cannot pay the sum ordered by the court.
Warren was jailed for 13 years in 2009 but because of concerns about a prison break from Jersey, he is serving his sentence on the mainland. Warren could be released as early as January.
Jersey’s solicitor general, Howard Sharp, claims that over the years, Warren has salted away millions of pounds and accumulated a vast fortune. Warren claims that after 17 years in prison and as a result of seized shipments, he has nothing.
Prosecutors also claim that £11.7m passed through an account held at a bureau de change account at King’s Cross in London between 1994 and 1996. The account, in the name of “Tony Liverpool”, was said to be Warren’s and that foot soldiers paid the proceeds of drug sales into the account. The two sums, adjusted for inflation, come to £198.51m in today’s terms.
A judge and six jurats – professional magistrates in Jersey – are expected to decide this week if Warren should pay, and if he does, how much. What assets he has remain a mystery and previous attempts at seizing his property have proved largely unsuccessful.
First published at 15:55, Tuesday, 05 November 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
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