A dangerous and violent man was extradited and £79,000 confiscated by police after they stopped a car in Westminster.
Officers from the Westminster Safer Transport Team were at a roadside checkpoint at Ecclestone Square, as part of Operation Cubo - to tackle uninsured vehicles - when they stopped a Vauxhall Insignia.
Inside the car were Polish nationals Wladyslaw Lakatus, 46, and Krystian Mendyk, 27. The younger of the two men tried to run from the scene but was caught and arrested.
Police searched the car and found £62,800 in sterling and 22,420 Euros.
A further £3,000 was discovered after a search at Lakatus’s home as well as a wallet containing bank cards and correspondence in neither of the men’s names.
Both men were arrested on suspicion of possessing criminal proceeds and theft.
Further checks revealed Lakatus was wanted under a European Arrest Warrant for failing to appear in relation to extradition proceedings concerning 60 offences committed in Poland including armed robbery, kidnap, blackmail, extortion, and serious assaults.
He has since been extradited to Poland and is serving a prison sentence in relation to these matters.
Insufficient evidence meant further criminal proceedings against the two men were not pursued.
However, officers from the Roads and Transport Policing Command’s Payback Unit began civil cash proceedings against both men under the Proceeds of Crime Act as they believed the money had come from crime.
And on Tuesday (April 7), Westminster Magistrates’ Court agreed and ordered the forfeiture of £62,800 and 22,420 Euros.
Chief Inspector Colin Carswell, Roads and Transport Policing Command, said: “Our role is safeguarding the travelling public.
"Our officers regularly carry out operations such as Cubo which deliver not only a key contribution to London’s roads safety, but also assist in preventing criminals using the road network.”