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Confiscation order for Herefordshire treasure trove

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Men who stole Herefordshire treasure hoard ordered to repay £600k each.


Two men who stole an Anglo-Saxon treasure hoard worth in excess £3.2m have been ordered to repay over £600k each.

The Confiscation Order, under the Proceeds or Crime Act 2002, was made on 21 December 2022 at Worcester Crown Court.

On 21 November 2019 George Powell, 41, and Layton Davies, 54 were found guilty of theft, conspiracy to conceal criminal property and conspiracy to convert criminal property. They were sentenced to ten years and eight years six months respectively, later reduced to six years and five years following a successful appeal.


His Honour Judge Cartwright rejected the evidence presented by both men at the contested hearing giving a number of reasons, which mainly centred around conflicting evidence presented in both the 2019 criminal trial and the Confiscation Contested Hearing.

He also rejected Davis’s claims that he played a reduced role in the criminal enterprise claiming he didn’t stand to benefit equally with Powell. The Judge disagreed and made a hidden assets order whereby he determined that they both still possess the coins and that the value of these coins is £600,00 each.


George Powell must repay £601,250 and Layton Davies £603,180 in full within three months from 21 December 2022, or they will serve five years and four months imprisonment each in default of payment. This term is in addition to their original sentence.

The convictions followed a lengthy investigation by West Mercia Police following several reports from the metal detecting community and the British Museum of an unreported large treasure find near Eye in Herefordshire in 2015.

It was discovered that the men had visited the site of the hoard, which included Anglo-Saxon coins, jewellery and silver ingots during Spring 2015. They not only failed to disclose the extent of their discovery - a requirement under the Treasure Act 1996 - but also sold a large number of the items for significant personal financial gain.


The treasure was described by experts as being of national importance both for Anglo-Saxon coinage and for the wider understanding of a key period in English history.

Superintendent Edd Williams, local policing commander for Herefordshire, said: “I’m delighted with today’s result, which brings closure to an investigation which we have been working on for seven years.

“The Confiscation Order, coupled with the sentences Powell and Davies received, send a strong and clear message that we take this sort of crime very seriously and will take action. It is a criminal offence to not declare finds of treasure to the local coroner’s office.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our partners, including Herefordshire County Council’s conservation and environment team and The British Museum, for their support in bringing this case to a successful conclusion.”

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