Cannabis gang used frozen meat firm as front to import £3.25m of drugs

Police bust cannabis gang that used frozen meat firm as front to import £3.25m of narcotics in to UK

  • Badrul Alam, Ismail Ahmed and Yamin Patel pleaded guilty to drug offences
  • The drugs were found inside a warehouse after meat gave off a ‘death smell
  • Officers tracked down the gang via DNA samples and cars parked outside
  • Patel was jailed for four years, Ahmed for three years and nine months and Alam for three and a half years. Gary McCann, 59, will be sentenced early next year
  • A dramatic video shows the moment police carried out a raid on a drugs gang that used a frozen meat firm as a front to smuggle cannabis worth £3.25m into the UK.

    クリップ, filmed on officer bodycams, shows investigators breaking down a door and arresting one of the suspects during a raid on a residential house, which eventually lead to three men being jailed.

    Badrul Alam, 35, from Nelson, ランカシャー; Ismail Ahmed, 36, バーンリーから; and Yamin Patel, 34, ブラックバーンから, were all jailed after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply cannabis resin and conspiracy to supply herbal cannabis.

    4人目の男, Gary McCann, 59, of Burnley, also pleaded guilty to the charges and will be sentenced on January 10 来年.








    Badrul Alam

    Ismail Ahmed

    Yamin Patel

    Badrul Alam (左), Ismail Ahmed (センター) and Yamin Patel (正しい) have all been jailed after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply cannabis resin and conspiracy to supply herbal cannabis

    Lancashire Police discovered the hidden drugs following a chance encounter in August last year.

    An officer working on an unrelated inquiry was drawn to the warehouse for A2Z Meats, in Oswaldtwistle, when some the meat went off and gave out a ‘death smell’.

    The PC repeatedly hammered on the door and called the telephone number given on the front of the premises but when he was unable to gain access, he called for back-up and found what was described as a ‘sophisticated cannabis set upwhich was being fronted by a meat-packing factory.

    A workstation had been set up within the body of the industrial unit with a pallet wall in the centre.

    On one side was a stack of boxes containing mostly frozen cow meat which was being unpacked and hurled into bins.

    Underneath the meat were heat-sealed packets of skunk cannabis and cannabis resin, 警察は言った.

    A section of the pallet wall had also been set up as a cleaning station.

    Police said it appeared the packets of drugs were taken out of the boxes, where they were mixed with the meat, before they were cleaned and re-packaged.

    A video clip, posted by Lancashire Police, shows officers rushing to the front door of a property before breaking it down

    A video clip, posted by Lancashire Police, shows officers rushing to the front door of a property before breaking it down

    One man is seen being arrested and taken from the property shortly after officers smash their way in

    One man is seen being arrested and taken from the property shortly after officers smash their way in

    Preston Crown Court heard 220kg of skunk cannabis and 208kg of cannabis resin with a street value of £3.25million was found inside four boxes.

    CCTV footage recovered from the area during investigations showed a HGV, registered to a haulage company in Spain, arrived at the unit that morning and a number of crates were delivered.

    Also that morning, defendant Gary McCann was captured on CCTV moving bins outside the unit in preparation for removing the cannabis from inside the boxes of meat.

    Lancashire police said further examination of documentation showed there had been around eight similar deliveries to the unit from the Spanish haulage company between March 2020 と8月 2020.

    Investigations revealed the unit was being rented by all three men and used as a cover to take the deliveries and to supply large amounts of cannabis.

    On the day the drugs were discovered, a Vauxhall Vivaro registered to Alam was found parked outside, alongside another vehicle that was owned by Patel. Both vehicles were left at the scene when the gang fled the warehouse minutes before the raid was carried out.

    Forensic examinations found DNA belonging to Alam and Patel on drink bottles recovered from an office.

    Further DNA belonging to Ahmed was found inside pink Marigold gloves that were used to clean the packages of cannabis.

    Police said the A2Z Meat factory warehouse was being used by the gang as a front to their drug dealing

    Police said the A2Z Meat factory warehouse was being used by the gang as a front to their drug dealing

    An officer, who attended the frozen meat factory by chance, found what was described as a 'sophisticated cannabis set up'

    An officer, who attended the frozen meat factory by chance, found what was described as a ‘sophisticated cannabis set up

    Preston Crown Court heard 220kg of skunk cannabis and 208kg of cannabis resin with a street value of £3.25million was found inside four boxes

    Preston Crown Court heard 220kg of skunk cannabis and 208kg of cannabis resin with a street value of £3.25million was found inside four boxes

    In sentencing the three defendants, Judge Guy Mathieson said: 'This was a huge criminal business operation to bring and distribute huge amounts of cannabis into the country'

    In sentencing the three defendants, Judge Guy Mathieson said: ‘This was a huge criminal business operation to bring and distribute huge amounts of cannabis into the country








    All three were linked to the conspiracy via data recovered from their mobile phones.

    Following a detailed investigation, officers identified those believed to be involved and executed warrants at addresses in Burnley, Blackburn and Nelson.

    Following consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), the defendants were charged with conspiracy to supply cannabis resin and conspiracy to supply herbal cannabis.

    金曜日に, Patel was jailed for four years, Ahmed three years and nine months and Alam three and a half years.

    Sentencing Judge Guy Mathieson said: ‘This was a huge criminal business operation to bring and distribute huge amounts of cannabis into the country.

    ‘It undoubtedly would generate huge amounts of profit for those who would receive those profits.

    ‘All three of you played a vital role in that enterprise.

    ‘You were involved as willing participants, as knowing participantsyou were recruited to do this work with your eyes open.

    ‘You were not conned, 強制, coerced or in any other way persuaded to do it.

    ‘You knew exactly what you were doing, what you were taking on and thought that the risk was worth it.

    After the case, detective chief inspector Tim Brown, from Lancashire Police, 前記: ‘These conspirators all played their individual roles in what was a sophisticated drugs operation, which saw large quantities of cannabis exported into the UK, repackaged and then sold on.

    ‘The only thing which motivated these men was greed.

    ‘While not Class A drugs, the sale of cannabis leads to exactly the same type of violence, exploitation and funding of serious and organised crime.

    ‘It causes misery in communities and leads to vulnerable people being taken advantage of.

    ‘This was a long and complex investigation and a lot of time, hard work and tenacity went into securing these convictions.

    ‘I am pleased that this organised criminal gang has now been disbanded and its members jailed. I would also like to thank our colleagues from the CPS.

    ‘Lancashire Police will not tolerate illegal drugs activity of any kind and will use all the powers available to us to seek out, arrest and prosecute the offenders.

    A fifth man charged as part of the conspiracy was acquitted.

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