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West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s new car - one previous drug dealing owner

Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire Mark Burns-Williamson.

Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire Mark Burns-Williamson.

The county’s police and crime commissioner’s claims he is saving money by re-using a car that has been seized from a convicted drug dealer.

Mark Burns-Williamson’s new company car is a seven-year-old Audi A4 that was seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

The car, which is estimated to be worth around £5,000, is also used by his staff.

Mr Burns-Williamson said: “Re-using the vehicle saves the public a significant amount of money which would otherwise be incurred through business mileage claims or the commercial hire of vehicles.

“This forms part of ongoing efficiency savings to ensure we continue to cost the public less than the previous police authority.”

Assets seized as part of the Proceeds of Crime Act are usually sold off with half of it going to the Treasury.

Police commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson has launched a campaign for forces to keep all the cash to reinvest in their communities.

Mr Burns-Williamson, who earns around £100,000 a year, has been criticised by a Kirklees councillor, Phil Scott.

Coun Scott said: “This vehicle should be sold and the money spent on local policing in communities.”

But the commissioner has received the backing from members of the West Yorkshire Crime Panel.

Panel member Coun Ken Smith said: “The money might go to hire or buy a new car, or you can cut out those transactions and just use the car.”

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: “The commissioner uses his own car, but along with all staff working within the office of the police and crime commissioner, he has use of a seven-year-old Audi A4 vehicle.”

 

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