Appeal to Lancaster drug dealer’s associates to help take fortune

Convicted drug dealer Damien O'Connor.
Convicted drug dealer Damien O'Connor.

A convicted drug dealer’s associates are being urged to help claw back his £1.5M fortune made from crime.

Damien O’Connor, 53, formerly of Scotforth, Lancaster, who has ties to Lancaster, Morecambe and Liverpool, was extradited from Belgium and jailed for 20 years in 2009 at Liverpool Crown Court over a conspiracy to import 18kg of heroin and 20kg of cocaine.

In December 2010, O’Connor was ordered to pay £1,021,300 – the figure he was judged to have benefitted by after drug dealing.

He was given until June 2011 to pay it.

When he failed to do so he was given another 1,974 days in jail.

O’Connor, who is thought to own properties in Belgium, Holland and Spain, eventually paid a fraction of the sum, handing over just £2,900.

His accrued interest is £494,884 leaving an outstanding amount of £1,513,284.

The National Crime Agency is now appealing for help to trace O’Connor’s assets under Operation Repay – an agency drive to take back criminals’ gains.

Nigel Kirby, deputy director, Economic Crime Command, said: “We will keep pursuing O’Connor until this court imposed confiscation order is satisfied.

“O’Connor has criminal associates in east Lancashire and he is believed to have historic links in Prague, Czech Republic.

“We have far-reaching legal powers to take action and confiscate assets, so if anyone can identify how he has used or invested his dirty money, we would urge them to get in touch with

us.”

If you can help call the NCA control centre on 0370 496 7622 or email communication@nca.x.gsi.gov.uk and quote Operation Repay.

You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.