A member of a gang who committed robberies across the West Midlands has been given six months to cough up £9,000 – or face more prison time.
Craig Reginald Clarke, formerly of Fareham Road, Birmingham, was jailed for 17 years in December, 2011, after admitting conspiracy to rob homes in Barnt Green, Solihull and Lichfield.
It was estimated Clarke, aged 32, made around £45,000 from the string of violent raids.
Clarke was ordered at Worcester Crown Court to hand over £9,000 of his ill-gotten gains or face an extra five months behind bars. He was given six months to come up with the money.
Pat Kelly, from the West Mercia police economic crime unit, said: “We will always seek to recover criminals’ assets under the Proceeds of Crime Act to ensure they don’t retain money made from their criminal activity.
“The point is that crime does not pay.
“He will have to pay up or receive another five months on top of his original sentence and still face having to pay at some point in the future.”
Mr Kelly said the gang had plotted a series of robberies across the region, the first in North Worcestershire at Barnt Green in April, 2010. Several men tied up the householders before escaping with firearms.
Further violent raids were carried out at Solihull on May 8, 2010, and a week later in Lichfield. Cars, cash, jewellery and valuable pottery were among items stolen.
The judge, in sentencing Clarke and the others, said it was professional criminality of the utmost seriousness, with terror inflicted on the victims.
Mr Kelly added: “This was a large scale investigation and the outcome should help reassure people that such crimes will receive utmost priority from the police.
“Robberies of this nature are thankfully rare in our area, but those involved in planning or carrying them out should be left in no doubt we will use every resource at our disposal to ensure they are brought to justice and then made to pay back any outstanding money.”