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'What is the point?' - readers' criticism for justice system after Sunderland drug dealers ordered to repay £1 each

Offenders can be ordered, under the Proceeds of Crime Act, to pay back an amount of money or hand over assets.
Offenders can be ordered, under the Proceeds of Crime Act, to pay back an amount of money or hand over assets.

Two Sunderland men jalied for supplying drugs have hit the headlines again after being ordered to pay back £1 each under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

POCA hearings are held as a means to seizing any money and assets criminals have a result of their offending. Shafiq Iqbal, who was jailed for three years after admitting supplying Class A drugs, and Mursalin Ali, sentenced to seven months for supplying Class B drugs, were this week each given a month to save up £1 to pay back. Assets and money seized following these hearings can go towards victims of crime, the police and the Home Office. Do you think they are worthwhile?

Dozens of you took to the Sunderland Echo Facebook page to share your views on the hearing, and on the sentence handed down to the two men.

Read more: Sunderland drug dealers ordered to hand back just ONE POUND each after making hundreds from crimes

Iqbal, of Thornhill Crescent, Sunderland, and Ali, of Northcote Avenue, Sunderland were told by Recorder David Gordon: "The drugs on our streets bring misery and degradation to young people. This type of behaviour will not be condoned."

Here's what you had to say on social media:

Paul Green: "But do 34mph in a 30-mile zone and it's a £100 fine. Absolutely playing the system all the way. Sickening."

Denise Pake: "These men won't be bothered about a pound. No matter age, colour or gender the law should be the same for everyone who commits a crime."

Brian Watson: "When I first read this, I thought it must be April Fool's Day, sadly it's not. This is a joke, but it's not at all funny."

Read more: What is POCA? How proceeds of crime are taken from criminals and where the money goes

Shafiq Iqbal and Mursalin Ali, who were ordered to pay 1 each - with a month's deadline.

Shafiq Iqbal and Mursalin Ali, who were ordered to pay 1 each - with a month's deadline.

Paul Johnson: "Disgusting, regardless of assets they should have received a large fine at least and told to pay it back over the next 10 years."

Dorothy Williamson: "Drugs is a cash business. Trying to prove what is the proceeds of crime is very difficult."

Pam Broadbent: "£1..... really ? No wonder people think this country's a joke!"

Lynne Leedham: "What is the point! All that money spent in catching them, ridiculous."

Shaun Holmes: "That will make them think twice about doing it again won't it ..."

Jackie Colman: "Law's a joke man, one pound."

Chris Higgins: "If the prosecution really believes that they only have £1 in assets, then get them repaying society through community service."