Aylesbury man jailed in 'biggest ever' organised crime sentencing in the region
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A man from Aylesbury was among the 13 criminals jailed in what is being described as the 'biggest ever' sentencing in the region.
Counter terrorism police officers secured their biggest ever combined sentence, for the East of England.
Taswir Mohammed, of Stoke Road in Aylesbury, was given an eight-year sentence for his role in a class A drugs network, yesterday (January 5).
The nationwide drugs ring, sold cocaine across the country, Mohammed was involved in the distribution of cocaine between Aylesbury and Sheffield.
Yesterday, Mohammed was among the final three members of the operation to be sentenced.
This concluded a long-running Eastern Region Special Operations Unit (ERSOU) investigation.
Totalling 129 years and nine months, the combined sentence for these 13 men, is the biggest secured by ERSOU’s regional organised crime unit (ROCU).
Brothers, Ansar and Ajmal Akram were identified by the authorities as the heads of the organised crime group (OCG).
Hailing from Hemel Hempstead, the pair used encrypted phones to organise exchanges of multiple kilogrammes of cocaine at a time up and down the country, selling the drugs to other gangs.
Over a six-month period in 2019, specialist officers tracked the group as they travelled the length and breadth of the country including to Yorkshire, Dorset, Middlesbrough, Leicester, Luton, Northampton and Bucks.
Waseem Khan, 38, of Carrisbrooke Road, Luton, was a senior member of the group who acted as a middle man for multiple customers, brokering drug deals nationwide. He was jailed following a hearing at St Albans Crown Court today for 15 years.
Also jailed today, was Mohammed Jahangeer, 39, of Ribston Walk, Sheffield, Yorkshire.
Jahangeer was jailed for 11 years at today's hearing.
Following the final sentencing, detective inspector Ian Mawdseley said: “The hearing today brings to a close a lengthy and complex investigation into this nation-wide drugs supply network.
“Thanks to the determination and tireless efforts of our officers, some very dangerous individuals are now facing a significant time behind bars and we’ve halted a supply of huge quantities of class A drugs into communities across the country.”
Ansar Akram 34, of Thumpers, Hemel Hempstead, was jailed for 15 years after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine and possession of criminal property.
His brother, Ajmal, also of Thumpers, was jailed for 14 years after being found guilty of conspiracy to supply cocaine and possession of criminal property.
The other senior member of the group was Rahoof Khan, 27, also of Thumpers, who orchestrated the OCG’s couriers, as well as acting as one himself on several occasions. He was sentenced to 11-and-a-half years in jail in December after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine.
The group had three regular couriers who were responsible for ferrying the class A drugs up and down the country, returning to Hemel Hempstead with bags containing thousands of pounds at a time. They were:
-Wasim Afzal, 44, from St Margaret’s Avenue, Luton, jailed for 11 years and nine months.
-Sarfraz Asif, 40, of Dordans Road, Luton, was jailed for four and a half years.
-Jameel Khan, 27, of Winchester Street, Nottingham, jailed for 10 years.
The following men were customers of the group, buying multiple kilogrammes of cocaine for onward sale in their local areas:
-Ahsan Mahmood, 50, of Southlands Avenue, Peterborough, jailed for 11 and a half years.
-Ben Lewis, 29, of St Swithins Road, Bridport, Dorset, jailed for seven years and two months.
-Ali Zarei, 26, of Derngate, Northampton, was jailed for five years and four months.
-Ryan Brockley, 36, of Deepdale, Leicester, jailed for five years.
Hannah Wilkinson, head of ERSOU ROCU, said: “Our unit uses a range of specialist tactics to tackle those at the top end of the drugs supply network and I’m really pleased that, thanks to the tenacity of our officers, we’ve secured our biggest ever combined jail sentence.
“Although criminals at the very top of the chain can seem removed from the devastating impact of drug dealing, the actions of people involved in such groups can still have terrible consequences for those living within our communities; from the vulnerable users who are exploited by the ruthless criminals out to make as much as they can, to those affected by the wide ranging criminality that comes about as a result of drugs supply.
“That’s why we’re committed to continuing to use our cutting edge capabilities to ensure we leave no stone unturned in our fight against those involved in the supply business, both within the eastern region and beyond.”