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PICTURED: The Walsall drug kingpin who will be stripped of his flash Audi

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A drugs kingpin is to be stripped of his flash car and illegal drugs cash after an investigation by police.

Cocaine dealer Paul Clarke from Walsall must pay back more than £50,000 of his ill-gotten gains or face more time behind bars.

The 32-year-old was jailed for six years for possession with intent to supply cocaine and money laundering at Wolverhampton Crown Court in January.

Detectives then launched an investigation to recover 'dirty' money.

They found just over £52,000 of available assets – including cash, an Audi Q7 and Peugeot van.

At a proceeds of crime hearing at the same Wolverhampton court, Clarke was told he must repay the amount within three months or serve another year in custody – meaning he will need to sell property.

Acting Detective Sergeant Yvonne Barwani, from the force's economic crime unit, said: "Clarke did not hide his supposed wealth by driving around in flash wheels.

"After Clarke's drugs empire was busted by officers we then set about recovering his ill-gotten gains.

"Just because someone has been jailed; we will still investigate if it is believed they have benefitted financially from criminal ways."

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Clarke, of Cresswell Crescent, Bloxwich, had been stopped by officers in the Mossley area on October 16 last year in a van which contained more than £70,000 of cocaine.

A search of his home address also recovered more Class A drugs and over £17,000 in cash. He was also charged with driving whilst disqualified, having no insurance and having no driving licence.

Money recovered from criminal activity is invested into the force's Active Citizens fund for use on community or crime prevention projects.

Sergeant David Simpson, from Walsall police, who was part of the investigating team, said at the time that the haul was a coup for the force.

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He said: "This is a significant seizure of drugs which we are really pleased we have removed from the streets of Walsall.

"We take all reports of drug dealing very seriously. We know how much misery it can cause in our neighbourhoods, attracting an undesirable element and other criminality, and will take decisive action to stamp it out." In total around £140,000 worth of Class A drugs were reported to be seized in the raid. Police said they found part of the haul in Clarke's white Peugeot van parked in Margam Terrace, in the Mossley district of Walsall. He subsequently appeared before magistrates at Walsall who committed the case to Wolverhampton Crown Court

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