Drugs gang who wanted to put £1m of cocaine on to Nottinghamshire streets jailed for 100 years

A drugs gang who wanted to flood the streets of Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire with more than £1 million of cocaine has been jailed for a combined total of 100 years.

Thursday, 21st October 2021, 10:47 am

The men were part of two organised crime groups (OCG) which trafficked the Class A drug between Lincolnshire and the West Midlands, with an estimated 17kg of cocaine between January 1, 2019 and January 27, 2020.

During warrants executed at properties across Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Warwickshire and the West Midlands, specialist search teams seized 2.086kg of uncut cocaine which had a street value of up to £209,000.

Officers also uncovered evidence of lavish lifestyles with receipts for a staggering £266,225 of goods including luxury clothing still in boxes, which had been purchased at stores in London, Paris, Copenhagen, encrypted mobile phones, and £29,540 of cash.

Some of the haul of drugs seized during the operation

The warrants were executed in January 2020.

The investigation revealed how the OCG from Lincolnshire sourced the Class A drugs from a Coventry-based OCG, with couriers making frequent trips to the Coventry area for exchanges to take place.

Drug buys also took place in a rural area near to Stanton on the Wolds in Nottinghamshire.

The operation was uncovered by detectives and investigators from Lincolnshire Police and the East Midlands Serious Organised Crime Unit (EMSOU).

Three of those sentenced, Robert Diaz, 42, of Waddington, Lincolnshire, Barry Knight, 60, of Bedworth and Stephen Oliver, 44, of Rugby, had stood trial at Nottingham Crown Court in August.

A further seven men had already pleaded guilty to other charges related to their part in the conspiracy, which also included the production of cannabis.

The other men sentenced were: Edward Wivell, 41, of Lincoln, Andrew Turner, 40, of Coventry, Joseph McCluskey, 43, of Coventry, Jon Moreton, 50, Stuart Bassett-Hawcock, 34, of Lincoln, Jack Constable, 34, of Nottingham and Michael Kershaw, 41, of Coventry.

Assistant Chief Constable Kerrin Wilson from Lincolnshire Police said: “We are determined to tackle the scourge of drugs which blights the lives of many across society, and thanks to the hard work of the investigation team, organised crime gangs which push these drugs have been dealt a swift and powerful blow to their operations."

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