Money launderer for major Blackpool drugs gang told police £70,000 seized was 'won at casino'

The organised crime gang was convicted of flooding Blackpool with hundreds of thousands of pounds of cocaine
The organised crime gang was convicted of flooding Blackpool with hundreds of thousands of pounds of cocaine
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Police have been told they can seize more than £70,000 from a man who helped launder money for a major drugs gang that flooded Blackpool with cocaine.

Gareth Oulton was stopped by officers in a van on Blackpool's Promenade. A search found more than £65,000 in cash inside the vehicle and almost £6,000 was found when police searched his premises.

Oulton, 40, now of Doncaster Road, Kingsley, in West Yorkshire, admitted money laundering at Preston Crown Court last year. He was given a suspended jail term in November, as other members of the gang were sentenced to more than 100 years behind bars.

Lancashire Police then applied to Blackpool Magistrates' Court to forfeit the £71,235 they had seized from the 40-year-old.

Oulton, who was not in court, did not contest the application.

Det Con Simon Robinson said Oulton's van was stopped on June 27, 2017, as part of the operation targeting the supply of class A drugs by an organised crime gang. They included pro boxer Jack Arnfield, of Ribby Road, Kirkham, who was also given a 12-month suspended sentence at the hearing in November.

Oulton had suggested to police he won the money at a casino but officer could find no evidence to back up the claim.

Oulton had since been convicted of money laundering and been sentenced to a community order.