Garage owner who supplied false number plates to criminal gang has hearing adjourned

Simon Oakley court case.Picture: Staff photographer

Simon Oakley court case.Picture: Staff photographer - Credit: Archant

A Norfolk garage owner who supplied false number plates for a prolific regional gang who burgled more than 200 homes had his hearing to claw back thousands of pounds in cash delayed.

Simon Oakley, 45, of Alburgh Road, Hempnall. Norfolk, was jailed for nine years for his part in the gang, which saw more than £2m worth of property stolen between February and December 2017, including high performance cars, cash and jewellery.

Oakley, was jailed for nine years in December 2018 after he was convicted of conspiracy to burgle, possession of a firearm without a certificate and handling stolen goods.

During the trial at Norwich Crown Court the jury heard how Oakley, who at the time owned Stratton Quick Fit, a garage and workshop in Long Stratton, helped to hide stolen vehicles and pass them off as legitimate for the gang.

Oakley also provided false registration plates for stolen vehicles used by the gang.

The case was back at Norwich Crown Court to deal with a confiscation hearing, which is expected to try to claw back thousands of pounds from the member of the crime gang.

However William Carter, prosecuting, asked for the case to be put back as it was a complex case and would need time to be resolved.

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He said at the moment the prosecution was at odds with the defence over the amount of benefit and assets which could be attributed to Oakley and said: "It looks unlikely there will be an agreed order."

He asked that the case be reserved to Judge Stephen Holt, who dealt with the trial, and said the proceeds of crime hearing was likely to last about three days.

Judge Holt adjourned the hearing until October 19.

Oakley did not attend court but was represented at the short hearing by John Morgans.

During the lengthy trial of the gang, the court heard how they would steal specific items such as high-powered BMWs and Audis, firearms, cash and jewellery and dispose of the items through contacts.

They carried out most of their crimes in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire but also spread in Suffolk and Essex.

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