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Killer 'who banked £120,000' cannot afford to pay it back

Colin Coates, 47, abducted, tortured and killed financial adviser Lynda Spence.

Torture: Colin Coates murdered Lynda Spence.
Torture: Colin Coates murdered Lynda Spence.

A murderer believed to have made almost £120,000 during his life of crime cannot afford to pay the money back, a court heard.

Colin Coates, 47, abducted, tortured and killed financial adviser Lynda Spence in April 2011 and is serving a life sentence.

Prosecutors pursued Coates under proceeds of crime legislation because he had been convicted of extortion during his trial.

Crown accountant Jill Yahi said she had studied Mr Coates's finances between the years 2006 to 2012 and concluded he made £119,967 from illegal activity.

On Wednesday, a judge at the High Court in Edinburgh ruled the money can be claimed back, but Coates will only pay a nominal £1 until further assets are found.

Judge Tom Hughes QC said prosecutors could seize more money from Coates in future.

He said: "I accept it was established that the respondent had a criminal lifestyle."

Coates was jailed for a minimum of 33 years for murdering Ms Spence, whose body has never been found.

Along with accomplice Philip Wade, he forced the victim into a car on Broomhill Path, Glasgow, on April 14, 2011, and drove her to a flat in West Kilbride, Ayrshire, where she was tortured and killed.

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