Five people – two men and three women – have been jailed after being convicted for their part in a drugs ring exceeding £100k, operating across Sheffield.
In June 2015, the South Yorkshire Police Fortify Team in Sheffield, dedicated to tackling serious and organised crime, launched an investigation into the group, who were suspected of dealing and moving Class A and B drugs – mainly crack cocaine, heroin and cannabis – across Sheffield.
Police officers suspected they were also laundering their illegal profits and after months of developing intelligence on the group, the team executed a series of warrants on Tuesday 2 February 2016 as Detective Chief Inspector Jamie Henderson, leading the team, explains.
“Eight people were arrested during the four warrants we carried out across Sheffield. Each address was linked to 31-year-old Mohammed Anwaar, who we suspected was leading the group’s activities.
“Over £90,000 cash was recovered, in addition to a CS gas canister, a quantity of cannabis, five 100gram gold bars, 25 packages of crack cocaine and 24 packages of heroin.
“We also seized a phone which contained pictures of a firearm. This was later identified as a viable firearm, linked to a separate investigation.”
Those arrested, who were later charged with various drugs and money-laundering offences were:
- Mohammed Anwaar, 31, of no fixed abode.
- Luke Padley, 28, of no fixed abode.
- Arsalan Hussain, 30, of West View Lane, Sheffield.
- Gemma Doherty, 34.
- Nilopher Kauser, 29, of Holmhirst Way, Sheffield.
- Shazad Hassan, 22, of Holmhirst Way, Sheffield.
- Tabassum Mohammed, 27, of Holmhirst Way, Sheffield.
- Zahide Parveen, 50, of Holmhirst Way, Sheffield.
DCI Jamie Henderson continued: “With all eight suspects released under investigation following their arrests, we continued building our case and samples of the cash recovered were analysed by experts.
“Bank notes were found to contain traces of cocaine, heroin and cannabis. Through financial enquiries, we also discovered that significant cash deposits were being transferred abroad from some of those under investigation.
“Despite the fact that the group knew they were under investigation, they were brazen in continuing with their criminal activity. One evening in April 2017, officers attempted to stop a car in Sheffield city centre, before it drove away at speed, with the occupants throwing items from the vehicle.
“Padley was found to be the passenger of the car and Hassan the driver. After searching the car, an amount of cash was recovered and 15 bags of cannabis were found to have been thrown from the vehicle.”
Following a two-week trial, Mohammed, Hassan and Parveen were found guilty of the following offences at Sheffield Crown Court on Thursday 26 November and subsequently sentenced yesterday (Friday 3 January):
-Mohammed, guilty of concealing criminal property and converting criminal property. He was jailed for two years.
-Hassan, guilty of concealing criminal property and possession with intent to supply cannabis. He was jailed for two years.
-Parveen, guilty of concealing criminal property and converting criminal property. He was jailed for two years.
Further offenders pleaded guilty to the following offences at an earlier date, and were sentenced yesterday:
- Padley pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and possession with intent to supply cannabis. Padley failed to attend the sentencing hearing at Sheffield Crown Court and was sentenced to five years and two months imprisonment in his absence.
- Kauser pleaded guilty to concealing criminal property, converting criminal property and possession of a prohibited weapon. Kauser was sentenced to two years and eight months.
The remaining offenders pleaded guilty to the following offences at an earlier date are to be sentenced later this month:
- Anwaar pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, concealing criminal property and possession of cannabis.
- Hussain pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of Class B drugs and converting criminal property.
- Doherty pleaded guilty to concealing criminal property and possession of a prohibited weapon.
DCI Jamie Henderson added: “This has been a complex, lengthy and significant investigation which has ultimately resulted in the disruption of a criminal drugs network operating across Sheffield.
“We’ve removed quantities of Class A drugs from the city and now eight people are facing the consequences. Officers from the Fortify Team and other specialist teams across Sheffield and the whole of South Yorkshire, are working incredibly hard to disrupt and dismantle the activities of organised crime groups, stop their supply of drugs and cash flow, identify those involved and bring them before the courts.”