Four men have been jailed after officers infiltrated a ‘drugs hotline’ in Oldham.
During an investigation that spanned almost 12 months, officers gained a wealth of intelligence about a well-established and profitable drugs operation.
Mobile phone analysis established a designated phone line was being used in connection with the supply of class A drugs including cocaine, heroin and crack cocaine.
The analysis saw tens of thousands of calls being made and received in order to sustain the illegal activity, encouraging the detrimental effects of drugs into the area.
In the early hours of Tuesday 28 February 2017, 50 officers executed warrants across the Oldham area, resulting in a number of seizures including drugs, cash and items linked to drugs supply such as scales and powders for cutting drugs.
On Wednesday 17 May 2017, four men were jailed at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court.
After being found guilty at an earlier hearing, the man who headed the operation, Ryan Robinson (24/04/1988) of Moor Street, Shaw, was given a six-and-a-half-year sentence.
Daren Stothard (07/06/1969) of Albert Avenue, Shaw who took over the running of the phone line when Robinson was imprisoned for an unconnected matter, received four and a half years in prison.
Jayden Ferrier (18/03/1995) of St Mary’s Street, Oldham, a street-level dealer in the operation was sentenced to four years.
After pleading guilty at an earlier hearing, Ian Noble (09/12/1982) of Vulcan Street, Derker, also a street-level dealer was jailed for three and a half years.
On Wednesday 12 April 2017, an associate of the five men appeared at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court for being concerned in the supply of class A drugs, possession with the intent to supply class A and class B drugs and possession of a prohibited weapon – CS spray.
Lewis O’Connor (13/05/1993) of Peveril Road, Oldham, was handed a six-year sentence in prison.
Detective Sergeant Rick Arthern of GMP’s Challenger Oldham Team, said: “We will continue in our fight to dismantle the processes and tactics used by organised crime groups at every opportunity, no matter how sophisticated or established they try to be.
“Without the public coming forward, these people would not have been prosecuted today so I’d like to express my heartfelt thanks to those who have helped us put a stop to organised crime.
“With that help, we can investigate and infiltrate the operations of those who benefit from the proceeds of crime.”
If you have information about criminality in your area, please contact police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.