A car ringer who made £220,000 from crime but claimed to be skint has been ordered to pay back £60,000.

And police have vowed to eventually claim back the other £160,000 if he starts earning money on his release from prison.

Gulbar Akram, 27, formerly of Troy Street, Blackburn, is currently serving four and a half years for changing the identities of stolen vehicles and selling them on.

At Preston Crown Court yesterday, Akram was ordered to pay back £60,000 within six months after Judge Michael Byrne made an order under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

Akram told the court he would have to ask family members to remortgage their homes and try and borrow money from friends to foot the bill.

But, speaking after the case, Sergeant Andy Dixon, from Lancashire Constabulary's serious and organised crime unit, said officers would be watching Akram once he was released from prison with a view to seizing the remaining £160,000.

Sgt Dixon added: "If he goes out and becomes a successful businessman we will say 'thank you very much' and go back to court to try and seize the money."

Akram was ordered to pay back £5,126.55 to one victim of his crimes, and £21,250 to another.

The remaining £33,623.45 of the £60,000 to be confiscated will go to the public purse.

Judge Byrne ordered that if Akram fails to handover the money by February 8, 2006, he will be given 18-months extra in jail.

The court was told Akram had recently made £53,000 from the sale of both a home in Brantfell Road, Blackburn, and a business called Charisma Fashions.

But Akram's legal team said that he did not have any of that money.

Sgt Dixon said it had been difficult to make judgements about Akram's lifestyle and to trace where money went.

He added: It has been a very complex investigation lasting for three years.

"But the financial investigation has taken away any rewards he made.

"He cannot take all the money now when he gets out in two years.

"He will not be allowed to retain the financial benefit.

Akram and brother Gilzameer, who was jailed for two years and eight months, pleaded guilty in February to handling 14 motor vehicles and the theft of a transit van.

The court was told that they replaced cars vehicle identification number, which is found on the chassis, drivers door and windows, with that of other cars.

This enabled them to pass on stolen cars as genuine.

Gilzameer Akram was ordered to pay back £23,000 within six months during a confiscation hearing in May.