Automatic machine gun and £6,000 found at Doncaster caravan site

Doncaster Magistrates' Court.
Doncaster Magistrates' Court.
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Police seized thousands of pounds and a machine gun during a raid on a caravan park in Doncaster, a court heard.

Doncaster magistrates heard that a feud between rival gangs in the travelling community led officers to the site where they discovered an automatic machine gun and over £6,000 cash.

The raid came as number of police forces joined together to carry out an operation in 2015 in attempt to halt the problems between the gangs, which included two teenagers’ skulls being taken from a grave.

The details of the case were outlined by a South Yorkshire Police officer during a short hearing on Thursday.

It was during a raid at the home of Tommy Lee Smith, aged 35, of Stockbridge Lane caravan site in Bentley on November 26 that officers recovered the weapon, as well as cash totalling £6,360.

Smith, who did not attend court, told officers that he bought and sold cars and did landscape gardening which is where the money had come from, but there was no proof of him paying tax of insurance.

The force sought a confiscation order for the money, which the magistrates granted at the hearing

A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police said: “It’s our belief this money was obtained by illegal means.”

Speaking after the case, Detectve Constable Rob Hunt said: “I am pleased with this result and I want to take the opportunity to reinforce the message that if you choose to take part in any form of criminality, we will take action against you and ensure you are brought before the courts and any form of ill-gotten gains are seized and confiscated.

“I want to reassure the communities in Doncaster that we will continue to take robust action against anyone involved in criminal activity, and I hope it sends a clear message to anyone involved in, or thinking of becoming involved in criminality, that crime does not pay.”