Hatton Garden heist ringleader ‘Basil’ ordered to repay £6m in three months or face jail
Michael Seed, 60, known as “Basil the Ghost”, was hit with a confiscation order of £5,997,684.93 and told he must cough up in three months or face seven years in prison
The last Hatton Garden raider to be jailed must pay back nearly £6million by Christmas or face up to seven more years inside.
Frugal Michael Seed, 60, known as “Basil the Ghost”, lived on less than £9,000 a year before the £13.5million raid in 2015, a court heard.
The alarms specialist and son of a DNA pioneering physicist was arrested in 2018, two years after the rest of the gang were jailed.
He was hit with the biggest sentence of the lot when he was locked up for 10 years last year.
On Thursday at Woolwich Crown Court, Seed was hit with a confiscation order of £5,997,684.93.
He must pay within three months or he could face seven years in prison.
It is one of the largest orders of its kind and Seed is not believed to have enough money to even cover the interest on it.
Adrian Foster, Chief Crown Prosecutor of CPS Proceeds of Crime said: “Despite Mr Seed’s protestations of innocence the CPS was able to prove that he was the masked man, and that he and his conspirators took millions of pounds worth of precious stones, gold and jewellery.
“He has now been ordered to pay almost £6million. If Mr Seed fails to pay the money he owes in time, he will face up to seven years in prison.”
Richard Sutton QC, defending, told an earlier hearing that Seed had been living on around the same amount as the state pension.
He added: “It does not suggest this is a man living on the proceeds of crime.”
He existed “off-grid” for 30 years, paying no tax and never claiming benefits.
Seed had no car or mobile phone and never used a bank or credit card, paying only in cash.
He lived frugally, dressed in an old jacket and Dr. Martens boots bought from Camden market, and walked miles around London from his home in Islington, favouring canal paths which were barely covered by CCTV.
His first jail time was in 1984, when he was sentenced to three years for dealing in LSD.
At his trial it was revealed that, just like Breaking Bad character Walter White, he had also been manufacturing the drug in his own lab.
Seed was one of two raiders who looted 73 safe deposit boxes at the central London vault after the ageing gang bored their way in.
He evaded capture for three years before police raided his flat in Islington, North London. He denied involvement, but was found guilty of several charges.
Judge Christopher Kinch QC, sentencing him in March 2019, said: “Your role was central.”
Fellow raiders Brian Reader, 80, John “Kenny” Collins, 78, Daniel Jones, 64, and Terry Perkins, 69, were jailed in 2016.