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Preston drug gang sentenced to over 70 years in prison

Posted on - 2nd March, 2022 - 11:33am | Author - | Posted in - Crime, Lancashire Police, Preston News
Members of a drugs gang have been sentenced. Pictures: Lancashire Constabulary

Sentences for members of an organised crime group (OCG) from Preston were handed out and total over 70 years for their part in a conspiracy to supply between £200,000 and £400,000 worth of class A drugs.

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The sentences for the eight men and five women were handed out on 24 and 26 January, 2, 3 and 4 February and 1 March at Preston Crown Court for offences including conspiracy to supply crack cocaine and conspiracy to supply heroin.

Nine members received immediate custodial sentences totalling 75 years and eight months.

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It follows a year-long investigation, codenamed Operation Zodiac, into the ‘Titch Line’ OCG and the supply of class A drugs in the Plungington and Ingol areas.

The group were brought to police attention in 2020, following an increase in drug-related violence in the area. Throughout 2021 an investigation team carried out warrants at several addresses, gathering evidence including large quantities of class A drugs, cash and mobile phones.

In total around 50 mobile phones were examined and over a million lines of call data analysed to establish who was involved in the OCG and to what extent.

It was found that the Titch Line was set up and headed by Jordan Murray – aka Titch – aged 28, of HMP Lancaster Farms, who gave directions and orders from his cell at the prison using contraband mobile phones.

Levi Wilson, aged 29, of Eversleigh Street, Preston, controlled the group on a day-to-day basis and at street level from early 2020 onwards. He took control of the group through intimidation and violence, including against rival dealers.

Joshua Wolstenholme, 19, of Ellen Street, Preston, was viewed as Wilson’s ‘lieutenant’ and was tasked with passing on orders and running drugs.

Kasib Hussain, 41, of Burrow Road, Preston, sourced drugs and acted as a courier and as a street dealer, while Gail Martin, 49, of St Thomas’s Road, Preston, allowed her house to be used for the supply of the drugs.

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The remaining 10 people – listed below – were involved as street dealers.

Evidence showed that Wilson had also used the tactic of ‘cuckooing’ – taking over the addresses of vulnerable members of the community and then forcing them to deal drugs on his behalf.

The number of addresses the group operated out of, the amount of people working for them and the number of phone numbers they used meant they operated on a 24/7 basis.

Det Sgt Richard Clancy, of Preston Target Team, said: “The sentences handed down to the group are the culmination of a long and complex investigation, which established that the gang was responsible for up to 10 kilos of class A drugs flooding the streets of Preston.

“In addition they exploited vulnerable members of the community, using fear and threats to ensure they did what they were told.

“I hope the fact that members of the OCG have now been jailed reassures the communities of Lancashire that we are committed to tackling organised crime on this scale, in turn helping to make their streets safer.

“Drugs are a blight on our communities, bringing nothing but harm, and we will not tolerate their supply anywhere in our county.

“These sentences should also serve as a warning to those who are involved in such criminality: we will continue to dismantle drugs supply networks by bringing those responsible to justice.”

The sentences are as follows: 

Jordan Murray, 28 of HMP Lancaster Farms. He pleaded guilty on 17/9/21, and was sentenced on 2/2/22, to 12 years in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Neil Smith, 45, of St James’s Road, Preston, pleaded guilty on 19/1/22, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to 10 years and six months in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Possess a Class A drug with intent to supply – Heroin
* Possess a Class A drug with intent to supply – Crack cocaine

Levi Wilson, 29, of Eversleigh Street, Preston, pleaded guilty on 1/10/21, and was sentenced on 2/2/22, to 10 years in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

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Kasib Hussain, 41, of Burrow Road, Preston, pleaded guilty on 8/11/21, and was sentenced on 24/1/22, to nine years and six months in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Samantha Winstanley, 35, of St James’s Road, Preston, pleaded guilty on 17/1/22, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to eight years in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Possess a Class A drug with intent to supply – Heroin
* Possess a Class A drug with intent to supply – Crack cocaine

Nigel Ogden, 54, of Edale Court, Preston, pleaded guilty on 1/10/21, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to seven years in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Possess a Class A drug with intent to supply – Heroin
* Possess a Class A drug with intent to supply – Crack cocaine

Anthony Hayes, 33, of Parker Street, Preston pleaded guilty on 17/9/21, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to six years and nine months in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Joshua Wolstenholme, 19, of Ellen Street, Preston, pleaded guilty on 14/10/21, and was sentenced on 3/2/22, to six years in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Leon Hayes, 19, of Parker Street, Preston, pleaded guilty on 17/9/21, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to five years and seven months in prison for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Vicky Hayes, 35, of Parker Street, Preston pleaded guilty on 14/1/22, and was sentenced on 4/2/22 to a two year suspended sentence for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Chelsea Doyle, 30, of Lockhart Road Preston, pleaded guilty on 6/12/21, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to a two year suspended sentence for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

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Amanda Small, 47, of Ellen Street, Preston, pleaded guilty on 1/10/21, and was sentenced on 4/2/22, to a two year suspended sentence for:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.

Gail Martin, 49, of St Thomas’s Road, Preston, pleaded guilty on 17/01/22 and was sentenced on 26/1/22 to an 18-month community order for:
* Allowing her premises to be used for dealing class A drugs between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021

A 16-year-old boy from Preston pleaded guilty to:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
He will be sentenced on 17/3/22.

Nathaniel Lawrenson, 19, of Redcar Avenue, Preston, pleaded guilty to:
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Crack Cocaine between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
* Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs – Heroin between 01/10/2020 and 11/06/2021.
He will be sentenced on 29/3/22.



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