A HAUL of more than £1m cash – seized from houses in Huddersfield – has been forfeited.
Police went to court to seek the Forfeiture Order following February’s raids in Crosland Moor.
But even though inquiries revealed the banknotes were contaminated with heroin, no-one will be prosecuted.
Detectives and lawyers have been unable to gather evidence to bring four people arrested in the raids, before a court.
It is understood they were bit-part players in a much bigger crime operation.
Police secured the Forfeiture Order totalling £1,119,640 at Wakefield Magistrates’ Court after no-one came forward to claim any of the money, found by Kirklees police during two raids in February.
Police discovered bundles of notes in simultaneous raids on the houses in Thornleigh Road and Pembroke Court as part of an intelligence-led investigation into suspected money laundering and drugs crime.
They said the money was believed to have been linked to serious crime.
Five large bags full of cash were seized.
Neighbours described hearing the security alarm go off as police smashed the door in at a £260,000 detached property on Pembroke Court.
A couple in their 30s were arrested there, while in Thornleigh Road a couple in their 40s were held.
A number of cars were seized by police in connection with the investigation.
All the cash recovered was heavily-contaminated with heroin.
A police spokesman said the people arrested have since been released without charge, but police were able to satisfy the courts that the cash was generated as a result of drug trafficking in the West Yorkshire area.
Under the Proceeds of Crime Act, West Yorkshire Police will receive a per centage of the cash forfeited.
This cash will be used to tackle a wide range of policing priorities including anti-social behaviour and burglary.
Some will also be handed out to community projects.
Since April 2011, West Yorkshire Police have secured court orders for over £3.4m in cash and assets from criminals.
Supt Dave Knopwood, of Kirklees Police, said: “This is an exceptional amount of money, but what we have done is not unusual.
“It is another example of the work that is happening every day, not only in Kirklees, but across the whole of West Yorkshire.
“The initial operation was carried out under the Proceeds of Crime Act as we strongly suspected that the cash seized was linked to serious offences that have taken place in the region.
“Whoever it ‘belonged’ to will have had their operation seriously disrupted by the loss of over £1m and that is obviously something we are pleased about.
“The courts were satisfied that the money had been generated through criminal activity and have forfeited it to the police and the Home Office, who will put it to far better use than the drug dealers and criminals who engage in this type of activity.”
He added: “Working with the public and our partners, we will relentlessly pursue the small number of criminals who are bringing harm to our communities.
“These criminals are living beyond their means and profiting from the proceeds of crime. Why should they?”