Wigan man told pay £45k or spend another year in jail

Thomas Gore
Thomas Gore

A Wigan man involved in a cocaine smuggling plot has been ordered to hand over £45,000.

Thomas Gore, of Scot Lane, Newtown, was one of five members of a gang jailed in December 2016 for conspiracy to import the drug from Mexico and he is currently serving a six-year jail term.

Gore, described as “a foot soldier”, was arrested after police raided a lock-up unit in Pretoria Road, Ashton, in March 2014 where two presses and 146g of cocaine and adulterants were found and seized.

When Gore’s home was searched, eight grammes of cocaine was found containing the same adulterant. He admitted conspiracy to import drugs.

A proceeds of crime hearing has now been held at Liverpool Crown Court and in an out-of-court agreement it was found that 39-year-old Gore had benefited by £113,124 and had realisable assets of £45,502.

Judge Robert Warnock ruled that Gore, who was not present for the hearing, must pay the money within three months or face 12 months longer in jail.

His assets were found to include equity in a house and a car.

Proceeds of crime hearings have already been held for four co-conspirators, Christopher Thompson, Anthony Jenkinson, Simon Perks and Martin Fish who were found to have benefited by a total of £450,000.

Thompson, 42, of St Wilfrid’s Road, Standish, was ordered to hand over £19,671; Jenkinson, 36, of Inward Drive, Shevington, £1,184 and Perks, 41, of Sefton Road, Orrell, had to part with £9,686. It was found that Fish had no realisable assets and he had the nominal sum of £1 awarded against him.

Fish, 31, of Bell Lane, Kitt Green and Perks are both serving 12-year terms, Thompson received 10 years and Jenkinson and Gore both got six.

The gang’s ringleader Adam Perks - who is on the run and is Simon Perks’ twin brother - had arranged to bring in cocaine from Mexico with a potential street value of £5m in two shipments.

And despite police raiding the gang’s Ashton lock-up where cocaine powder was being pressed, they went on to arrange a further substantial shipment, hiding the drug in a shipment of coffee beans - to disguise the smell - from California to Felixstowe,

Jailing the gang Judge Steven Everett condemned their “sheer greed”.

He said it was clear that Adam Perks was at the top of the management chain and had been involved in discussions with at least five South American cocaine suppliers which led to 20kg of cocaine being smuggled into the UK in 2013.