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BREAKING: NCA: Kinahan Crime Group Hit With Worldwide Financial Sanctions

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#AceNewsRoom With ‘Kindness & Wisdom’ Apr.13, 2022 @acebreakingnews

Ace News Room Cutting Floor 13/04/2022

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#AceBreakingNews NCA Report: That an Irish organised crime group responsible for importing multi-tonne quantities of drugs and firearms around the world for more than 20 years has been hit with international financial sanctions – leaving their bank accounts frozen and funds inaccessible.

The Kinahan crime group, which has also been linked to more than a dozen gangland murders, have been effectively cut off from the global financial system.

Over the last two years, the National Crime Agency, in collaboration with international law enforcement partners and US government bodies, have collated material generated from significant operational activity which shows their involvement in serious and organised criminality.

The material was submitted to the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) in the United States, who today announced that the head of the crime group, Christopher Vincent Kinahan Snr, and his two sons, Daniel Joseph Kinahan and Christopher Vincent Kinahan Jnr, along with a number of their associates and businesses, will be subject to the sanctions.

Over the years, the Kinahans have gone to extreme lengths to avoid law enforcement action by using corrupt officials, receiving training in anti-surveillance techniques, and working with trusted associates to distance themselves from their criminal activities

And they have sought to locate themselves outside of the UK and Ireland, to frustrate the NCA and partner law enforcement efforts to pursue them.

However, NCA investigations have caused major disruption to the crime group’s activity in the UK and beyond.

Last month, Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh, who ran the Kinahan’s criminal operations in the UK was jailed for 21 years, along with brothers-in-law Gary Vickery and Daniel Canning, who were sentenced to 20 years and 19 ½ years respectively.

Evidence showed they were responsible for cocaine importations estimated to be up to £23.4 million, and cannabis importations worth around £6.4 million.

James Mulvey, another key player in the crime group, was arrested in Lithuania in 2017 after NCA investigators evidenced he trafficked drugs worth an estimated £68m. He is currently serving a 32-year jail term.

NCA officers have prevented eight threats to life – murders and punishment beatings – on the streets of the UK and elsewhere by sharing intelligence with law enforcement partners.

The NCA and its partners have also seized dozens of firearms, including machine guns and automatic rifles. The agency’s international network of officers have shared intelligence with our overseas law enforcement agencies that has disrupted the group’s activities.

NCA Deputy Director of Investigations, Matt Horne, said:

” We target criminals who cause the most harm, are the most violent, those who exploit the vulnerable, and dominate communities. The Kinahan crime group fall into all of those categories: They have transcended international boundaries – distributing multi-million pound shipments of drugs throughout Ireland, the UK and mainland Europe, and have been engaging in firearms trafficking and money laundering.

“They thought they were untouchable but the sanctions imposed today will be a huge blow to the Kinahans. It has cut them off from the global financial system, making them toxic to legitimate businesses and financial institutions, and will cause other criminals to think twice about doing business with them.

“Additionally, it shows that we will explore every opportunity available to disrupt their criminal activities and, rest assured, we will not stop here.

“It doesn’t matter how long it takes, we will ensure those who are responsible for flooding the streets with drugs and firearms, laundering the proceeds of crime, ordering murders and inflicting violence are held to account for their actions.”

The NCA has been working with international law enforcement and government agencies – including the US Drug Enforcement Administration and Dept of Treasury, An Garda Siochana the Police Service Northern Ireland, the Spanish National Police and Guardia Civil – since 2019 to collate intelligence and evidence to achieve OFAC designation.

The Kinahans, who currently live in the United Arab Emirates, will also now be on the Specially Designated Nationals list, which is used by global institutions to screen and potentially block transactions to avoid any enforcement action.

Other individuals who will be added to the SDN list are Irish nationals Sean Gerard McGovern, Bernard Patrick Clancy, Ian Thomas Dixon and John Francis Morrissey.

Three business entities – Nero Drinks Company Limited (owned or controlled by, directly or indirectly, John Morrissey), Hoopoe Sports LLC (owned or controlled by, directly or indirectly, Ian Dixon) and Ducashew General Trading LLC (owned or controlled by, directly or indirectly, Daniel Kinahan) will also be added to the designation list and are subject to the same sanctions.

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Apr.13:  2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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Ace Daily News

UK: Court Sentences a man who ran ‘Organised Crime Network’ to 21yrs in Prison

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#AceNewsRoom With ‘Kindness & Wisdom’ Mar.30, 2022 @acenewsservices

Ace News Room Cutting Floor 30/03/2022

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#AceDailyNews Court Report: A man who ran the UK arm of a major international organised criminal network dismantled by the National Crime Agency has been jailed for orchestrating the importation of multi-million pound drug shipments.

Officers at house
The raid was part of a wider investigation to dismantle his drugs empire, with NCA officers also targeting his associates – Dublin-born brothers-in-law Gary Vickery (above, right), 39, and Daniel Canning (above, centre), 43.

Irish national Thomas ‘Bomber’ Kavanagh 54, who was a high-ranking member of the Kinahan organised crime group – a Irish network involved in drugs supply, firearms and money laundering – acted as the figurehead of the organisation in the UK.

He lived with his family in a fortified mansion, complete with reinforced doors and bulletproof glass, in Tamworth, Staffordshire, from where he ran his criminal empire.

When the NCA raided the property in January 2019, officers found numerous weapons, including an illegal stun gun for which he was eventually given a three-year jail sentence.

Cash in sofa
Officers also seized cash worth around £35,000 in various denominations, including sterling, euros and Emirati dirhams, which had been stuffed into drawers, bags and down the back of sofa cushions (left).

NCA investigators were able to evidence their involvement in large scale drug shipments worth around £30 million at UK street value, as well as movements of cash and firearms.

Kavanagh, Canning and Vickery all admitted conspiring to import class A and B drugs, and money laundering, while Canning also admitted possessing a firearm and ammunition.

At Ipswich Crown Court on 28 March Kavanagh was sentenced to 21 years in prison, Canning was jailed for 19 ½ years, and Vickery got a 20-year sentence.

NCA Deputy Director of Investigations Matt Horne said:

” Kavanagh was a high ranking member of the Kinahan cartel, an organised crime group synonymous with acts of violence. He was their main man in the UK.

“Through their criminal connections overseas, his organisation was able to organise, import and distribute drugs worth many millions of pounds.

“These men considered themselves to be untouchable, but we were able to systematically dismantle the group and prove that this was not the case.”

The NCA’s investigation into Kavanagh’s network began in early 2016.

In January 2017 Irish police linked a number of seizures of drugs and weapons to Midlands-based freight and logistics firms linked to Canning, Vickery and a third Irish man named Martin Byrne.

Vickery, Canning and Byrne were all arrested by the NCA in October 2017 following the seizure of 15 kilos of cocaine and more than 220 kilos of cannabis, found inside a six-tonne industrial tarmac removal machine at Dover.
The drugs had been hidden inside the machine (right), which had a tracking device fitted and was due to be delivered to an industrial unit in Wolverhampton.

This led NCA officers to raid two industrial units linked to the gang, one in Wolverhampton and one in Wednesbury.

In the Wednesbury address investigators found the shell of an industrial transformer, which still had traces of cocaine inside, as well as a black holdall containing a handgun and ammunition.

Byrne’s DNA was found on the gun, and his fingerprints on the bag with was in.

Investigators also found boxes full of tracking devices, identical to the one found on the machine seized at Dover.

Officers raided Vickery’s rented property in Boundary Lane, Solihull, where they recovered five 25 kilo barrels of boric acid powder – often used as a cocaine cutting agent – a cash counting machine, £43,000 sterling and 200,000 Euros cash.

Small amounts of cash and further phones and encrypted communications devices were found at Canning’s home in Dickens Heath.

Information on those devices showed Kavanagh was heading up the criminal enterprise, with messages between the group referring to him as “the Gaffer”. He was also in contact with criminal contacts in Europe to orchestrate shipments.

Kavanagh was arrested at Birmingham Airport as he returned to the UK on 12 January 2019.

Communications between the group also provided evidence that they had been involved in at least four more drug importations prior to the Dover seizure in October 2017, bringing the estimated street value of cocaine importations by the group up to £23.4 million. Cannabis importations over the same period are estimated to have been worth around £6.4 million.

The trio pleaded guilty to the offences they were charged with in July 2020, though legal arguments, the Covid 19 pandemic and Vickery’s extradition from Lanzarote delayed their eventual sentencing. Martin Byrne died of cancer in August 2018 before he could be charged.

Deputy Director Matt Horne added:

” This investigation involved co-operation with An Garda Síochána in Ireland. We are determined to work together to target criminal networks impacting communities on both sides of the Irish sea.
“Our financial investigation into Kavanagh and his associates is ongoing, with a view to stripping them of any assets they have acquired through their criminality. This is not the end of our activity targeting this group.”

NCA officers have already obtained freezing orders on a number of high value items, including watches, bikes and jewellery, seized as proceeds of crime from Kavanagh’s Tamworth mansion, as well as the house itself. Vickery’s property in Spain is also subject to a restraining order.

Kate Anderson, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor of the CPS International Justice and Organised Crime Division, said:

” This organised crime group imported millions of pounds worth of dangerous drugs into the country, concealing them in machinery in a bid to evade detection.

“They showed no regard for the communities they were putting at risk and pleaded guilty in the face of overwhelming evidence showing their part in this illicit operation.

“Cases like this demonstrate our commitment to disrupting organised criminal activity – and ensuring they face justice.”

Assistant Commissioner John O’Driscoll, who heads Organised and Serious Crime within An Garda Síochána, said:

” The successful outcome to court proceedings in the UK today represents a very positive development in efforts being made by law enforcement authorities, at an international level, to tackle criminality engaged in by organised crime groups and networks that have an international dimension and who, through the sale of drugs and other crimes have a negative impact on communities across the globe.

“An Garda Síochána has forged a very powerful working relationship with the UK’s National Crime Agency, which is assisting in ensuring that communities in the UK and Ireland are better protected from organised crime”.

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Mar.30: 2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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Ace Daily News

NEW ZEALAND: Hosts Child Abuse Platform Leads To 450-Abusers Being Arrested in UK

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#AceNewsRoom With ‘Kindness & Wisdom’ Mar.11, 2022: @acenewsservices

Ace News Room Cutting Floor 11/03/2022

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#AceNewsDesk says according to an National Crime Agency Report: 450 people have been arrested in the UK after they were identified as members of an online platform used for trading child sexual abuse material.

The material was some of the most ‘horrific and devastating’ investigators had seen. It included a particularly disturbing and sadistic video series, which showed the torture, rape and sexual abuse of three kidnapped young girls, one of whom was an 18 month old toddler.

Authorities in New Zealand, where the platform was hosted, launched an investigation in October 2019 and identified tens of thousands of global users.

Information relating to accounts believed to have been created in the UK was passed to the National Crime Agency. The NCA launched a high priority operation to analyse the data, before initiating its own investigations, as well as disseminating packages to law enforcement partners across the country.

So far, 450 UK-based users of the platform have been arrested by police, Regional Organised Crime Units (ROCUs) and the NCA, for a variety of child sexual abuse offences.

NCA investigations alone have led to the arrest of 95 people, with 42 having been charged to date and 28 convicted. NCA officers have also safeguarded 79 children.

Although many were initially arrested for their roles in sharing child abuse material on the platform, this often led investigators to uncover further serious offending, including contact abuse.

NCA officers arrested Robert Stanley from Essex in April 2020 after receiving intelligence he had accessed three Category A (the most serious) child abuse videos. Analysis of his phone uncovered screenshots of a video call with his partner, Danielle Schofield of West Yorkshire, where she sexually abused an eight-year-old girl. Messages also showed the pair fantasising about kidnapping, gagging and keeping a child chained up as their ‘sex slave’. They were jailed for a total of seven years and nine months in April 2021.

In August last year, Steven Skelton from Folkestone was jailed for ten years, after a Kent Police investigation found he had been directing the abuse of hundreds of children around the world. He had in his possession more than 230 videos showing victims as young as seven live streaming themselves between 2019 and 2020. On one of his phones was a conversation in which he sent sexual messages to a 13-year-old girl, who officers identified and safeguarded.

Many of the UK offenders were also working in positions of trust, including at primary schools and nurseries, within law enforcement, as medical professionals, and some as religious officials.

Other suspects were in the process of applying for jobs working or volunteering with children.

In May 2020, NCA officers arrested brothers Akaash and Nadeem Hussain, from Sheffield, after the pair were found to have signed up to the platform. Akaash, a night support worker at a children’s home, had 200 indecent images of children (IIOC) on his phone. Nadeem had downloaded over 400 and both pleaded guilty to making IIOC.

Sarah Blight, Deputy Director of the Child Sexual Abuse Threat at the National Crime Agency, said:

” This has, and continues to be, a hugely important operation. The information received from our partners in New Zealand pointed to a significant number of online accounts linked to individuals in the UK, who likely pose a sexual threat to children.

“After analysing this data, we were able to prioritise those offenders believed to pose the highest risk, and share details with our policing partners throughout the UK. This has so far led to the arrest of 450 suspects, some of whom were already known to law enforcement and many of whom were working in positions of trust.

“Much of this activity took place during the Covid-19 lockdowns, when the majority of young people were at home and offenders had more time to spend online targeting their victims. Identifying and safeguarding vulnerable children during this period was our absolute priority.

“Work is very much ongoing across the country to disrupt more of these sexual predators. Each month the NCA and UK policing arrest around 850 suspects and safeguard over 1,050 children. The NCA is focusing on the most dangerous offenders; we have the specialist capabilities to identify them and ensure they are brought to justice.”

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: Mar.11: 2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts from Twitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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BREAKING: SPAIN: Britain’s Most WANTED Woman Arrested After 9yrs on the Run

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#AceNewsRoom With ‘Kindness & Wisdom’ Mar.11, 2022 @acebreakingnews

Ace News Room Cutting Floor 11/03/2022

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#AceBreakingNews says a money launderer involved in a £1 billion mobile phone tax scam who was one of the National Crime Agency’s most wanted fugitives has been arrested in Spain.

Panitzke being handcuffed by officers

Sarah Panitzke, aged 47 and originally from Fulford near York, was detained as she walked her dogs in Santa Barbara, Tarragona, on Sunday morning [27 February] by the Spanish Guardia Civil as part of an operation supported by HM Revenue & Customs.

She has now appeared in court and was remanded in custody as extradition proceedings begin.

Panitzke disappeared in May 2013 as she stood trial for money laundering offences.

She was convicted and sentenced in her absence to eight years following an investigation by HMRC, who identified she was part of an organised crime group responsible for laundering approximately £1 billion from a mobile phone VAT fraud.

NCA International Deputy Director Tom Dowdall said:

Panitzke and her co-conspirators were given jail terms totalling 135 years.

“Sarah Panitzke has been on the run for almost nine years. Given the length of time she might have thought we had stopped searching, but she remained on our radar.

“Joint working between UK law enforcement and our partners in Spain led to her being apprehended, and we will now seek her extradition back to the UK to serve her prison sentence.

“This should serve as a warning to others on our most wanted list – we will not rest until you are captured, no matter how long it takes.”

Simon York, Director, Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC, said:

“Sarah Panitzke was one of Britain’s most wanted tax fugitives.

“She played a pivotal role in a multi-million pound VAT fraud and moved millions through offshore bank accounts.

“Panitzke thought she had put herself outside of the reach of HMRC, but through our work with UK law enforcement and international partners we have tracked down another tax fugitive. No tax criminal is beyond our reach.

“We have helped secure the return more than 60 fugitives since 2016, including some of the UK’s most harmful tax cheats.”

Lord Ashcroft, Founder and Chair of the independent charity Crimestoppers, said:

“It’s hugely encouraging news to hear of Sarah Panitske’s arrest in Spain after being on our Most Wanted list for some years. It shows how our charity, working with the NCA to find the most wanted fugitives, benefits us all. Our communities, here in the UK and abroad, are safer as a result.

“If you know the whereabouts of any of the remaining Most Wanted fugitives, you can contact Crimestoppers completely anonymously by calling 0800 555 111 or by using our anonymous online form.”

#AceNewsDesk report ………….Published: Mar.11: 2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts from Twitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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UK: NCA Arrest & Charge TOP Vietnamese People Smuggler In Operation In Liverpool

#AceNewsReport – Feb.12: A man who is suspected of being a high-ranking member of a Vietnamese people smuggling network has been arrested by the National Crime Agency.

#AceDailyNews NCA Report: 32-year-old Mai Van Nguyen, of Holloway Circus, Birmingham, was detained in an operation in the Woolton area of Liverpool on Tuesday morning (8 February).

After being questioned by NCA investigators he was charged with the offences of conspiracy to assist unlawful immigration and money laundering and is now due to appear before Birmingham Crown Court today (9 February).

The arrest is the latest phase of an investigation into the smuggling of mainly Vietnamese migrants into the UK in the backs of lorries in August, September and October 2020.

The investigation has already seen a number of others arrested and two men charged.

Ho Sy Quoc, aged 22, of Handsworth, Birmingham, was arrested in September 2021. He is due to stand trial at the city’s Crown Court on 28 February.

Meanwhile a Bolton taxi driver accused of working with the same network has also been charged with people smuggling offences.

32-year-old Karzan Mohammed, of Brandwood Street, Daubhill, will appear before Wigan Magistrates today (9 February) charged with conspiring to assist unlawful immigration. He was arrested by NCA officers in September last year, and was charged when he answered bail last month.

NCA Branch Operations Manager Paul Boniface said:

“This is the latest phase of an ongoing investigation into the activities of a significant smuggling network, bringing people illegally into the UK and then laundering the profits.

“These groups treat people as a commodity to be profited from and are quite happy to put lives at risk. We are determined to do all we can to stop them.”

The NCA leads the law enforcement response to the organised criminality involved in the trafficking and smuggling of people impacting upon the UK.

The agency investigates the highest harm criminal networks, and currently has around 50 ongoing investigations into networks or individuals in the top tier of organised immigration crime or human trafficking.

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Feb.12: 2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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NETHERLANDS: NCA Report: One of the UK’s MOST WANTED men was arrested jogging

#AceNewsReport – Feb.07: Stevenson, of Fishcoates, Rutherglen, was named in an NCA appeal just two weeks ago when a new campaign was launched to trace 12 fugitives.

#AceDailyNews NCA Report: Fugitive on the run over alleged drugs plots arrested jogging in Dutch street: James ‘Jamie’ Stevenson, 56, was taken into custody after an operation by the National Crime Agency, Dutch National Police and Police Scotland.

UK Most Wanted fugitives

He was wanted by the National Crime Agency and Police Scotland over the seizure of approximately one tonne of cocaine and 28 million Etizolam ‘street Valium’ tablets.

The cocaine was found in a shipment at the Port of Dover in September 2020 and the tablets were seized following a raid on a suspected pill factory in Kent in June 2020.

Stevenson was also wanted in connection with two suspected arson attacks on properties in the Lanarkshire and Forth Valley areas in May 2020.

After a period of surveillance, he was arrested around midday by a Dutch tactical unit in the southern municipality of Bergen op Zoom alongside another man who was also wanted by Police Scotland.

NCA Regional Head of Investigation for Scotland Gerry McLean said:

Both men remain in custody and will face extradition proceedings.

” Stevenson was arrested while jogging and was clearly trying to keep himself fit for a life on the run.

“Any arrest of a fugitive over extremely serious allegations is a great result.

“The Agency has been working endlessly with Police Scotland and international partners to trace Stevenson and return him to the UK.

“It does not matter where fugitives go, we will work with partners like the Dutch National Police who’ve provided superb help, to trace and arrest them.”

Stevenson is the second man to be arrested after the launch of the Most Wanted campaign.

Joshua Hendry, 30, formerly of Walton, Liverpool, was arrested in Marbella, Spain, two days after featuring in the appeal.

Lord Ashcroft, Crimestoppers founder and chair, said:

” I’m extremely encouraged to learn of the successful capture of another fugitive, proving how vital our joint Most Wanted campaign is with the NCA in helping to find these individuals.

“If you know the whereabouts of any others on our list, you can tell Crimestoppers and stay completely anonymous. Our charity is here for you 24/7 – online and on the phone. By working together, we can help make our communities safer here in the UK and abroad.”

Anyone with information about one of the Most Wanted is urged to call CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, and callers in Spain should call the freephone Spanish number 900 926 111, which will be answered by CrimeStoppers in the UK (using translation if required).

Alternatively, members of the public can fill out an anonymous online form at the UK charity’s website crimestoppers-uk.org/fugitives.

#AceNewsDesk report …………..Published: Feb.07: 2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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GRT MANCHESTER: Court Report: Seven men jailed after military grade weapons recovered in #Encrochat probe #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Feb.06: The men all pleaded guilty to charges which arose from Operation Venetic – the UK law enforcement response to the takedown of encrypted communications platform #EncroChat.

#AceDailyNews Court Report: Operation Venetic: Seven men have been jailed after a National Crime Agency investigation uncovered plots to sell a terrifying haul of automatic and semi-automatic firearms and to target a man in a revenge shooting.

On 3 April 2020 Brandon Moore, 24, and Jordan Waring, 24, survived a shooting in Kersal, Salford.

The men immediately began plotting with accomplice Umair Zaheer, 34, to hatch an ultimately unsuccessful revenge shooting.

Zaheer sent them both a message telling them to get a location for the target “and we will end it”.

An EncroChat message from a phone used by both Waring and Moore said: “Oh yes he’s a dead man.”

Zaheer, of Somerset Road, Eccles, was known as ‘Assasin’s Creed’ on the EncroChat system, and on 14 April 2020 he sent a list of firearms, ammunition and accessories for sale to Bilal Khan, 33, who was known as ‘Legend Killer’.

Measle Firearms

The firearms included an AK47 assault rifles and Skorpion and Uzi machine guns – “everything an assassin might want”, Manchester Crown Court heard.

In early 2020 an international law enforcement partnership had defeated EncroChat’s encryption and enabled the NCA to see what the offenders in this case were plotting – the revenge shooting, firearms trafficking and drug deals.

The NCA passed evidence of the revenge plot to Greater Manchester Police who investigated and the men were charged as a result along with drugs offences.

The NCA investigated the supply of the firearms and ammunition.

EncroChat messages showed that another man, Robert Brazendale, 34, worked as a trusted quartermaster and courier and was an essential cog in a machine running guns to other serious organised crime groups.

After one deal was struck, on 15 April 2020 Brazendale, of Selworthy Drive, Warrington, drove his red Citroen van to deliver an AK47 assault rifle to a man in exchange for £10,500.

The man cannot be named for legal reasons. The gun was later recovered by police at a property in Astley, near Wigan.

Later that day Brazendale was involved in another delivery after Khan, of Mersey Road, Didsbury, brokered and forwarded sale details to an unknown EncroChat user.

Riding a bicycle, Brazendale arrived at a convenience store car park in Thelwall, Warrington, and handed over an Uzi and Skorpion machine guns, a Taurus Brasil revolver and 300 rounds of ammunition to courier Hitesh Patel, 27, in exchange for £37,000.

Patel agreed to drive the deadly haul to London in a Toyota Yaris. The guns were recovered by the Metropolitan Police on 30 April at an address in Brent, London, hidden in a false wall. A silencer was also found.

Brazendale made a third firearms delivery that day.

He later met Khan – who worked for a property management company – at the same convenience store car park and put an AK47 and large quantity of ammunition into the boot of his BMW.

EncroChat evidence showed that Khan messaged Zaheer to meet him at an empty office block he held the keys for. While there, Khan and Zaheer posed with the firearm before hiding it.

On 21 April NCA officers raided the property and recovered the East German AK47, two clips of ammunition and other loose ammo. Some of the bullets were soft-nosed and designed to expand on impact.

The next day, Khan attended the unit and, pretending to be someone else, tried to find out what had happened.

He messaged Zaheer: “Bro they found it. Makes zero sense but NCA have that AK.”

He was arrested the day after at his home in Didsbury. Zaheer was arrested on 23 April. He fled from a car and tried to outrun NCA officers who caught him as he attempted to ditch his Encro phone.

Brazendale was arrested but fled to Spain. He was arrested in Estepona, Malaga, in October 2020 under a European Arrest Warrant after a joint operation to trace him by NCA international liaison officers and Spanish National Police.

In December Zaheer, Moore and Waring, both of no fixed address, admitted conspiring to possess firearms or ammunition with intent to endanger life in relation to the revenge shooting.

Zaheer, Khan and Patel, of Garden Lane, Chester, also admitted a separate count of possession of firearms with intent to endanger life.

Brazendale admitted conspiring to transfer prohibited firearms.

Zaheer and Louis Coleman, 23, of Pendlecroft Avenue, Salford, both admitted conspiring to supply cocaine, with Zaheer also admitting conspiring to supply cannabis, and Coleman admitted conspiring to supply ketamine.

Today, Zaheer was sentenced to 25 years in prison; Khan to 10 years and eight months; Patel to seven years and five months; Brazendale to 11 years and three months; Moore to 11 years and five months; Waring to eight years and seven months; and Coleman to six years and nine months.

Neil Gardner, NCA operations manager, said:

” The weapons we took off the street and out of the crime groups’ hands were some of the most lethal around with a truly devastating capability.

“In seizing these weapons which are capable of firing multiple rounds per second, we have saved lives and protected the public.

“The offenders thought they were safe using encrypted comms, but working with the Crown Prosecution Service and Greater Manchester Police, we built a solid case that resulted in the men admitting their involvement.

“We will continue to do everything we can with partners at home and abroad to prevent organised crime groups trafficking firearms.”

Detective Constable Steven Walker, of GMP Salford’s Organised Crime Unit, said:

” This group of men undoubtedly posed a significant threat to the city of Salford and it’s right that they’ll now spend a majority of their adult years behind bars.

“The weapons that they were in possession of and the conspiracy they were planning could’ve proved to be a lethal combination and the work we’ve been able to do with the National Crime Agency has certainly saved at least one life.

“We believe some of the serious criminality we’ve seen in Salford over recent years has stemmed from the threat posed by these individuals and there’s no doubt the community can welcome the fact that these men won’t be operating on our streets for decades to come.

“This was a complex case and I’d like to thank our team of detectives from our team tackling organised crime in Salford, as well as partners from the National Crime Agency who brought the encrypted material to our attention to ensure that this group can be brought to justice for the full extent of their offending.”

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Feb.06: 2022:

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(LONDON) Kingston Crown Court Report: NCA/AFP Joint Investgation: Six men have appeared and were charged in relation to the seizure of 450kg of MDMA hidden in an excavator that was shipped to Australia #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Apr.10: The men were all charged with conspiring to export Class A drugs after a joint investigation between the National Crime Agency (NCA) and the Australian Federal Police (AFP).

‘Six remanded over alleged Class A excavator conspiracy: On 15 March last year officers at the Port of Brisbane discovered the drugs hidden in a specially adapted boom of the excavator’

Excavator

EncroChat messages sent between January and June 2020 detailed plans to purchase the excavator in the UK, hand-drawn illustrations of the concealment within the boom, costs relating to the importation and confirmation that it had been loaded onto a Vessel in Southampton on 24 January and arrived in Brisbane seven weeks later.

It had been lined with lead to mask 226 packages of MDMA concealed inside.

After being emptied of the illegal load, the excavator was delivered to its intended recipient in Sydney.

NCA investigators analysing encrypted messages obtained as part of Operation Venetic – the UK investigation into the EncroChat network – uncovered an alleged criminal conspiracy by a London-based crime group to export drugs in heavy plant machinery to Australia.

Yesterday (Tuesday) six men appeared at Kingston Crown Court. They were remanded to appear again on 16 April for a pre-trial hearing.

The defendants are: Danny Brown, 53, of Kings Hall Road, Bromley, Kent; Stefan Baldauf, 61, of Midhurst Road, Ealing, London; Peter Murray, 57, of Trafalgar Road, Greenwich, London; William Sartin, 59, of Timberlong Lane, Basildon, Essex; Piotr Malinowski, 37, of De’Arn Gardens, Mitcham, London, and Tony Borg, 42, of Southwark Path, Basildon, Essex.

Two men aged 33 and 42 were also charged in Australia.

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: Apr.10: 2021:

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