Drug runners jailed for £150,000 heroin plot
DRUG runners from Gloucester involved in shipping £150,000 heroin from Sheffield into the county have been jailed.
Fakrul Islam Khan, 28, of Knowles Road, and Mohamed Rayaz Bham, 23, of Farm Street, were sentenced yesterday at Bristol Crown Court following an in-depth investigation by Gloucestershire Constabulary's Serious and Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) into a Gloucester-based organised crime group.
Khan was sentenced to eight-and-a-half years for his role in trying to import around four kilos of heroin from a Sheffield curry house into Gloucester. He was caught making four trips from Sheffield to Gloucester under police surveillance as part of Operation Munich.
Bham received a four-and-a-half year term after he was found with almost a kilo of seven per cent pure heroin at a bus station in Sheffield. He was involved in three trips but was also recorded making phone calls to help set up the deals.
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Officers intercepted a red Mitsubishi car in December and found a purple cushion on the back seat stuffed with two bags of heroin and £47,000 in cash. It was traced back to Khan.
On passing the sentence, Judge William Hart said they were part of a "very sophisticated drug supply operation".
"The supply and use of class A drugs is a blight on society and carries a substantial sentence as a deterrent," he said. "Khan, you were involved in organising the supply and control of these drugs, you were a facilitator in the operation."
He told Bham: "The telephone calls you made show more of an involvement than that of just a courier."
The men were part of a gang operating around Sheffield and Rochdale area. In March, police seized 11.5kg heroin after a raid in Rochdale, with 1.5kg destined for Gloucester, and £47,000 cash.
Khan was given a heavier penalty for his role organising couriers or 'mules' to transport heroin picked up from the Spice Box Indian takeaway in Sheffield. The drug was mixed with caffeine and paracetamol. Both men pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
Detective Inspector Neil Carpenter, of the Serious Organised Crime Unit, said: "The release of such large amounts of heroin for sale onto the streets would have caused huge misery within our communities and the gang could have profited to the tune of £150,000."
Their gang members – Mohammed Dilu Miah, 30, of Morpeth Street, Gloucester, and Ripon Miah, 31, of Broad Street, Newent – have already been sentenced to three and four years in prison respectively.