Four Luton drug dealers jailed after police intercept cannabis network
Four drug dealers involved in a large scale cannabis network in Luton have been jailed.
Police detectives seized more than £10,000 in cash as well as large amounts of cannabis from an organised crime gang in the Biscot Road area of the town.
Between June 2020 and January, officers also seized paraphernalia associated with drug dealing as well as several mobile phones, one of which had more than 50,000 calls and messages in a four-month period referencing the sale of drugs.
Umar Ali, 28, Abu Ali, 25, and Yusef Ali, 21, all of Biscot Road, Luton, and Anwaar Chaudhary, 22, of Norman Road, Luton, all pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply Class B drugs and were sentenced yesterday (Thursday) at Luton Crown Court.
Umar Ali was sentenced to four years and six months in prison; Yusuf Ali was jailed for three years and three months, while both Abu Ali and Anwaar Chaudhary received jail terms of three years.
Detective Chief Inspector Louisa Glynn, from Bedfordshire Police’s intelligence team, which led the operation, said: “In Bedfordshire, drugs continue to be the most significant driver of things like knife crime and gun crime, with drug dealers exploiting children and other vulnerable people and bringing harm to our communities.
“Dealing cannabis is increasingly being used as a ‘gateway’ by gangs and organised crime groups to exploit children and start them on a path of violence and exploitation that so many find it difficult to turn back from.
“Growing and selling cannabis is at the heart of this exploitation, especially as it is relatively cheap to produce and there are thousands of customers in Bedfordshire alone to sell to.
“People might see cannabis as a relatively harmless drug – but it can be a driver for a whole range of violence, exploitation and, frankly, human misery.”
A fifth man was handed a community order as part of the Bedfordshire Police operation.
In the last year, cannabis has accounted for 83 per cent of drug seizures in Bedfordshire, with 161 separate seizures of a total of 12,879 plants.
Bedfordshire Police is supporting the next campaign by the Bedfordshire Against Violence and Exploitation (BAVEX) project raising awareness of child exploitation.
To report any information to the police, please visit Bedfordshire.police.uk/report.