'Skint' gangster Terry Adams jailed after refusing to pay £46,000 court costs
BROKE: Terry Adams says he is on the breadline after his 2007 prosecution (PA)
FORMER gang boss Terry was today jailed for after refusing to pay £46,000 of outstanding court costs amid claims he is on the breadline. The sentence at Westminster Magistrates Court came after it emerged on Sunday he was now living in a council flat in north London. Adams, 64, told the court he survived on benefits and could afford only to pay about £15 a week towards the debt. He said: "I am living on handouts. I will pay as much as I could now. I can afford to pay what I do now, 10 to 15 pounds a week. That's what I can afford." The costs stem from a 2007 conviction for money laundering when he was jailed for seven years and made to pay around £750,000 under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
BIG SPENDER: Alfreda Ruth Adams and Husband Terry outside the High Court (PA)
All utilities at the flat in a converted town house in Bloomsbury in the name of his wife Alfreda Adams, 58. Adams' lawyer Stephen Gilchrist told the court: "Mr Adams has been the subject of litigation for 16 years and now the court still wants blood. "The fact of the matter is you cannot get blood out of a stone." Kennedy Talbot QC, prosecuting, said: "He did not get near the burden of proof that he has no funds, and his lifestyle and expenditure was not comparable with someone who could not pay." Mr Talbot added that Adams had repeatedly refused to give the name of a man - described as a member of his extended family - who helped him pay the original confiscation order. District Judge Michael Snow said Adams led the court on a merry dance. He said: "I'm satisfied that he clearly has assets available, assets he does not wish to disclose to me. "But he doesn't have to spend a day in custody because if he settles the order in full he will be released immediately."
GANG: (L-R) Michael, Patsy and Tommy Adams
Adams is said to have run the north London Adams crime family, also known as the A-Team, with brothers Patsy, 62, Tommy, 60, and Michael, 53, who are all currently in prison. The gang was suspected of links to 25 gangland murders, crimes such as extortion and drug dealing and police corruption. At the height of its notoriety in the 1990s and early 2000s, police believed the gang amassed an up to £200 million criminal fortune that was stashed away in offshore bank accounts. Adams had his own yacht and the couple sent their daughter to a private school. Despite the alleged level of criminality, since 1992 the only conviction Adams has faced was for the money laundering in 2007. He was jailed for seven years after £10 million operation by MI5 and the Serious Organised Crime Agency that involved bugging his home over 21 months.
FALLOWFIELD: The Adamses mansion was worth around £1.6 million
The Adamses have steadily climbed down the property ladder since being forced to sell their £1.6 million mansion called Fallowfield in Mill Hill, north London, in 2009, after the major money laundering case. It was famed for having a grand piano, giant harp and a portrait of Al Pacino in the Godfather movie in the lounge in estate agent brochures. After selling the mansion, the couple initially moved into plush privately-rented properties where monthly rents average around £1,500 to £2,000 or more. The first was a privately-rented flat at the plush Clock Tower development at London Colney, near St Albans, in Hertfordshire. They then moved to another rented flat in converted 1830s Ludgrove Hall in Barnet, a former manor house and then school. After that it was a rented house in Barnet. It was then onto an elegant housing association flat in a converted Victorian town house in Warren Street, Fitzrovia, from 2015 after they joined the council emergency housing waiting list, before getting a tenancy at the current address. Alfreda was initially charged with the money laundering case, but later acquitted. At a 2014 hearing in which Adams claimed he could not afford to pay £720,000 of criminal earnings following a proceeds of crime confiscation hearing connected to the money laundering prosecution, Mrs Adams' spending was revealed. The High Court heard Mrs Adams spent thousands of pounds since her husband's release from prison in 2010, including £12,000 on dental treatment, £2,500 on a weight loss programme and more than £5,300 on parking fines. She said she was "living beyond her means," but the prosecution claimed she spent around £97,000 a year and it must be from criminal proceeds "hidden away". In 2017 Adams, who claimed he "felt like a ponce" living off his wife eventually paid back £720,000. We contacted the Adamses through Mr Gilchrist, but they declined to comment.