Plymouth cocaine dealer is facing longer in jail over unpaid £75K
A BIG-TIME cocaine dealer serving an 11-year prison sentence could face an extra 20 months in jail for not paying £75,000.
Stephen Hawken, aged 48, appeared at Plymouth Crown Court yesterday to appeal for more time to come up with the money he was ordered to pay on December 2 last year under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
His barrister, James Taghdassian, told the court Hawken had previously had an issue over assets returned to him damaged and now worth less than their original valuation.
He now accepted he had to pay the money in full, denying he was trying to bargain down the value of his realisable assets or the amount he owed.
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"He needs to get on and sell property and land, though he has spoken to his partner who is less than willing to converse with him regarding the need to sell," he said.
Judge Francis Gilbert QC told Mr Taghdassian: "I happen to know a bit more about the history of this case than you do.
"All he has done is gone off to a different firm of solicitors who are ignorant of what's happened to date."
The court heard that Hawken had a share in pasture land at Ridge Road, Plympton, and a 33 per cent share in a property at Riverford Close, Woolwell.
Judge Gilbert added: "Your client was playing games with the ownership of these properties.
"He has done nothing for the last six months and now comes to me to set aside an order which he consented to.
Jo Martin, for the Crown, opposed any extension of time to pay, saying Hawken had until July 20 to persuade the confiscation court in Weston Super-Mare to grant him an extension.
If they refuse, they could order Hawken to serve an extra 20 months in prison, but he will still owe the £75,000 when he comes out.
Judge Gilbert refused the application.
Hawken was arrested after a dramatic three-hour siege involving armed police at his exclusive Derriford property in November 2008, ending only when he was shot with a baton round and Taser.
The sentencing court heard how Hawken had hidden parts of his guns everywhere from his coffee machine to behind the walls of his plush house in the private Delgany Drive.
Drugs worth thousands of pounds were found buried in next door's garden and a shotgun was found in a container on land near the house.
Hawken entered last-minute guilty pleas to seven of the nine counts against him.
They included possessing a class B drug – 345g of one per cent amphetamine – with intent to supply and a class A drug – 1,011g of nine per cent cocaine – also with intent, as well as possession of a stun gun, a handgun, a double-barrelled over-and-under shotgun, and ammunition without certificates.
The court heard how he had collected a string of convictions for drugs and firearms offences over the last two decades, already serving prison sentences totalling nine and a half years.