Arran Coghlan loses Alderley Edge house seizure appeal

Arran Coghlan
Image caption A High Court judge rules there was "no compelling reason" why Mr Coghlan's case should be given a full hearing in court

A businessman cleared of killing three people and of drug dealing has lost a second appeal against the seizure of his £450,000 house.

A civil court had ruled that Arran Coghlan, 40, from Cheshire, used drug dealing profits to buy the house.

Mr Coghlan claimed the National Crime Agency (NCA) based their case against him on "fraudulent misrepresentations".

The High Court upheld its decision made last year that his appeal had "no real prospect of succeeding".

Mr Justice Tugendhat said there was "no compelling reason" why Mr Coghlan's case should be given a full hearing in court.

'Extravagantly' restored

A judge ruled in 2012 that Brook Lane Chapel, in Alderley Edge, Cheshire, had probably been bought for £450,000 in 2007 with the profits of drug dealing in the Stockport area.

Mr Justice Simon ruled in a civil court that Mr Coghlan had "engaged in unlawful conduct as a drug dealer" and lived on the proceeds between 1999 and at least April 2004.

The ruling opened the way for the NCA to seize the property under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

Mr Coghlan launched a claim against the NCA and one of its investigating officers, insisting he had never dealt drugs and that the case against him was based on "fraudulent misrepresentations".

The agency claimed Mr Coghlan had headed up "a large-scale and profitable drug dealing enterprise in Stockport".

Their lawyers had insisted that his relatively meagre legitimate income over the relevant years could not have covered the thousands he pumped into "extravagantly" restoring the Brook Lane Chapel.

Case collapses

Charges were dropped against Mr Coghlan in 2010 when he was accused of shooting dead Stephen Akinyemi in a fight at his home in Alderley Edge in February.

Mr Coghlan was also cleared in 1996 of shooting Chris Little dead at the wheel of his Mercedes in Marple, Stockport.

Seven years later Mr Coghlan stood trial for the murder of drug dealer David Barnshaw, who was kidnapped and forced to drink petrol before being burned alive in the back of a car in Stockport in 2001.

He was again cleared.

In 2011 a multi-million pound drugs conspiracy case involving Mr Coghlan collapsed.

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