A record $3.64million raised from assets seized from criminals is available to community groups and local governments in the latest round of proceeds of crime grants.
Parliamentary Secretary to the Attorney General John Hyde MLA said that an increase in the number of staff pursuing the proceeds of crime meant that more money for grants would be available more often.
“The funds available for this latest round of grants have increased from the $2.3million offered in September last year to $3.64million,” Mr Hyde said.
“Over the last year, we have also been able to double the number of funding rounds from one to two per year.”
The Criminal Property Confiscation Grants Program was set up in 2003 to direct money and other assets obtained illegally by criminals back into the community in the form of grants.
“Money raised through criminal confiscations this financial year alone includes more than $1.6million in cash, $4.3million in land and $113,000 in vehicles.
“Assets that have been seized over the years also include a spa, a fog machine, arcade games, a silver dagger, a coin collection, a limousine and an air hockey table.
“A small plane, allegedly used to import drugs into the State and worth approximately $140,000, is currently being held pending the outcome of a trial.
“We are hitting criminals in the hip pocket where it hurts, which means we can put more money back into the community through services and programs which help combat the damage caused by their illegal activities.
“We also aim to help victims of crime by making sure that the ill-gotten gains of criminals are directly used to assist those whose lives are impacted by crime.
“In 2007, the State Government funded 60 projects totalling $3.8million over two funding rounds, and more than $7.5million has been given out since the program began.”
Not-for-profit community groups and local governments can apply for grants of up to $100,000 for projects which aim to reduce drug abuse or drug-related crime, support victims of crime, or for community safety and crime prevention purposes.
Application guidelines and forms can be downloaded from the Attorney General’s website at http://www.premier.wa.gov.au
Applications close on Friday, May 14.
A second funding round will be held later this year.
Attorney General's office - 9422 3000