A corrupt detective who stole enormous amounts of seized drugs and conspired to sell them back on to the streets with his brother, earning them at least £600,000, has been jailed for 23 years.
Detective Constable Nicholas McFadden of West Yorkshire police, 38, took more than £1m of heroin, cocaine and cannabis by exploiting "slack" procedures while working at secret evidence stores.
He and his brother, Simon McFadden, 41, who was jailed for 16 years, conspired to sell the drugs back to underworld contacts.
A judge sentencing the pair at Leeds crown court said the men had been motivated by an "insatiable greed" that made them "so much money they simply didn't know how to spend it", but which ultimately led to their downfall.
The brothers lived a lavish lifestyle, splashing out on exotic holidays, designer clothing and jewellery, expensive artworks, home improvements and private number plates for their luxury cars, jurors in the five-week trial heard.
When police raided Nicholas McFadden's family home in Castleford, West Yorkshire, they found almost £160,000 in banknotes stuffed into sacks in his garage and £20,000 hidden around his house. They also discovered £6,000 concealed in his vehicle.
On his arrest, Nicholas McFadden had £430,000 which could not be traced to legitimate sources.
Simon McFadden had £160,000 which could not be accounted for and claimed it was casino winnings. He had, in reality, lost £8,000 at the casino in the period in question.
Karen McFadden, who lived with Simon in Harehills, Leeds, was spared an immediate jail term for the sake of her teenage son after admitting money laundering.
She was given a 12-month sentence suspended for two years after the court heard she revelled in their new-found wealth but did not know how her husband was making the money, of which she spent £11,000 at the upmarket department store Harvey Nichols.
The detective was caught after regularly paying cash into ATMs, which triggered a bank's security alert and police were informed. When he was arrested, he told police he found bags of cash in a ditch by the M62 and later claimed he made it selling illegal steroids.
Judge Tom Bayliss said: "The two of you were putting back on the streets drugs which successful police operations had taken off the streets. And in doing so you became very rich."
However, he added: "The effect on all of you is devastating. For a brief period, crime paid for your extravagances – but now you have a lifetime to regret it."
He told Nicholas McFadden, who joined the force in 2000 and siphoned off drugs being held as evidence when he worked for a special organised crime group: "In the course of your duties you had access to controlled drugs, and you abused your position to steal and trade in those drugs.
"Drugs that were taken off the street by your colleagues were put back on the street by you and your brother, Simon. Drugs like heroin – noted for the misery that it brings to those who have the misfortune to be addicted to it and for the crime that is caused by those desperate wretches to get their hands on the money to buy it.
"Your motive was simple – greed.
"By your actions, Nicholas McFadden, you have brought yourself down from a position commanding respect to the life of a vulnerable prisoner with no prospect other than financial ruin upon your release."
Turning to the disgraced detective's brother, Judge Bayliss said: "You, Simon McFadden, are a hard-working man reduced to criminality by greed."
Bayliss criticised the West Yorkshire police security measures in place at the time, saying they "were not operated as robustly as one would expect" at the secret evidence stores, which housed guns, massive amounts of drugs and other contraband.
"The system seems to have relied to a large extent upon the integrity of those operating it and, as a consequence, it was open to abuse.
"Nicholas McFadden, you took advantage of that weakness. You exploited shortcomings and exploited individuals to steal."
The Guardian 04 April 2013
[IMGL=WHITE]http://www.drugs-forum.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=31999&stc=1&d=1365142068[/IMGL]Nicholas McFadden and Simon McFadden were jailed at Leeds Crown Court*
*Images and caption from BBC
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Police officer jailed for selling seized drugs