• Sunday, November 27, 2022

UK News

Bury man gets 10 years in jail on birthday for involvement in drugs crime ring

By: Shubham Ghosh

It was a forgettable birthday for Nabeel Rashad from Southbank Road, Bury, on Friday (4) as he was sentenced to a decade in jail after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to provide cocaine and heroin and conspiracy to money launder.

He was sentenced by Judge Alan Conrad KC.

The man, who turned 29 the same day, appeared at Manchester Crown Court. He was identified through the Encrochat communication system which is popular among organised criminals.

Greater Manchester Police said in a press release, “At the forefront of this sentencing is the use of Encrypted mobile phones, which falls under Operation Venetic, the UK’s response to infiltrate and disrupt the ‘Encrochat’ communication system used by organised criminal networks. Operation Venetic is led by the NCA and is the UK’s largest operation to fight organised crime.”

It said that GMP could access the Encrochat data through a legal data hack and it helped them reach Rashad, who used the alias ‘LIMITEDTURTLE’.

The court was told how the man was involved in an organised crime outfit’s purchase of around 15 kilograms of cocaine and 9.5 kilograms of heroin in mid 2020. It was also said that Rashad was involved in breaking down the big amounts into smaller batches that were then sold to distributors from where they would reach customers in distant places such as Bradford and Liverpool.

GMP said that on July 16, 2021, officers carried out a surveillance were Rashad was found carrying two bin liners and another bag to his residential address. More than 14 kilograms of cocaine were recovered from his bedroom and packaging from more than 100 kilograms that had been broken up.

The potential wholesale value of the 14 kilograms was £529,00, the police said, adding the potential street value of the drugs identified from the kilo-packaging would be up to £3.6 million.

Detective Constable Marc Walby, of GMP’s Serious and Organised Crime Group, said, “Our team worked meticulously with other agencies to piece together a timeline of Rashad’s actions to bring about charges and then a conviction for his crimes.

“The severity of his offences should not be underestimated, and the quantities of drugs we are talking about here are beyond substantial.

“The removal of Rashad and his associates will have a discernible difference on the streets of Oldham and across the North West.”

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