£45,000 seized from sex trafficker
A sex trafficker who controlled a prostitution network across the UK has been ordered to pay £45,000, the Crown Office said.
Stephen Craig, 35, from Clydebank, West Dunbartonshire, was jailed for three years and four months in October last year for arranging travel, accommodation and advertising for 14 women.
His co-accused, Sarah Beukan, who is known as Ashleigh Beukan, was jailed for a year and a half for her part in the human trafficking scheme.
Beukan, from Leith in Edinburgh, was 22 at the time.
In the first case of its kind in Scotland, the pair admitted moving 14 people to various addresses in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Belfast, Cardiff and Newcastle to work as prostitutes.
They were the first people to be convicted in Scotland under new legislation covering trafficking within the UK.
At Glasgow Sheriff Court today, a confiscation order for £45,000 was made against Craig.
Lindsey Miller, head of the serious and organised crime division of the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, said: "Stephen Craig took part in a criminal prostitution operation that spanned the United Kingdom.
"His conviction, along with that of his co-accused Ashleigh Beukan in September last year, was a landmark case for human trafficking in Scotland.
"By virtue of this conviction, Stephen Craig was deemed to have committed a lifestyle offence under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
"This meant we could ask forensic accountants to look at all of his income during the six years leading up to his arrest who calculated he benefited to the sum of £236,651 in that period.
"Today's confiscation order for £45,000 represents the full amount which is available to us at this time from Stephen Craig.
"We will continue to do all in our power to disrupt those who traffic and trade in human beings for profit, by depriving them of their ill-gotten gains and preventing them from re-investing in further criminal activities."
The women were moved around the UK to work at all of the premises set up by Craig and Beukan.
Pre-paid credit cards were used to transfer money and pay for the rental of properties, so the women would not carry cash when they travelled.
They also provided accommodation for the women to work out of, put out advertisements for their services in newspapers and online, and took a cut from their wages.
A number of foreign nationals were also found working in the brothels but there was no evidence to suggest Craig and Beukan were trafficking people from overseas into the UK.
Detective Inspector David Perrit, of Strathclyde Police's major crime and terrorism investigation unit, said: "Strathclyde Police will continue to use the Proceeds of Crime Act to pursue anyone who makes money from criminal behaviour as this legislation is one of the most effective ways of disrupting organised crime.
"Today's confiscation order sends a strong message that crime does not pay and clearly shows those who think they can make money from their criminal activities that the law will catch up with them."
Jeremy Paxman reveals he has heard senior Tories calling activists 'swivel-eyed loons'
Gay couple beaten in park urge MPs to moderate language on gay marriage
Strewth mate. Aussies wave goodbye to Britain as it becomes too pricey to stay
X marks the spot: The find that could rewrite Australian history
Oklahoma tornado latest: Obama pledges support for 'as long as it takes' to rebuild the suburb of Moore
- 1 'He was lucky he didn't die' - George Michael fell out of speeding car onto M1 motorway, according to eye witness
- 2 Austerity has hardened the nation's heart
- 3 Gay couple beaten in park urge MPs to moderate language on gay marriage
- 4 X marks the spot: The find that could rewrite Australian history
- 5 'It was just like the movie Twister': Man survives Oklahoma tornado by taking refuge in horse stall
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.
£200 - £250 per day: Progressive Recruitment: Java Developer- £200-£250 London...
£40000 - £60000 per annum + Excellent benefits, inc bonus & healthcare: Progre...
£30000 - £45000 per annum + Bens: Progressive Recruitment: Exciting opportunit...
Negotiable: Progressive Recruitment: SAP BI Specialist - Contract - 6 Months -...