Four Men Jailed For 20 Years After Police Uncover 15mil Cannabis
Four men have been jailed for a total of more than 20 years after police seized the largest amount of cannabis ever found in Britain worth a staggering £15 million. The monumental find in October 2008 included a mountain of cannabis weighing over 3.2 tons plus amphetamine worth £10,000 and £170,000 in cash. Detectives found the secret lock-up was being used to store the 180 boxes of cannabis each weighing 44lbs plus 40 flower boxes containing skunk. They even found a hidden room for stashing drugs behind a cupboard. They also found tell-tale signs of a major drug operation at the garage floor scales and equipment for grinding cannabis. Robert Price, 55, of Leeds, admitted conspiracy to supply cannabis and being concerned in the supply of amphetamines and was jailed for eight years.
Scott Weaver, 30, also of Leeds, admitted conspiracy to supply amphetamines, being concerned in the supply of cannabis and possession of a prohibited weapon. He was jailed for five years and three months. Andrew Lee, 46, formerly of Wakefield, had previously admitted conspiracy to supply cannabis resin. His brother Graham Lee, 43, formerly of Leeds, admitted supplying amphetamines, supplying cannabis and assisting an offender. Both were jailed for three years and four months. Price, a businessman and property dealer was the 'lynchpin' in the operation to store and distribute the drugs, Leeds Crown Court heard on Thursday. He owned several properties and luxury cars and had 100,000 pounds stashed under the floorboards of his home.
Andrew Lee was employed as his 'patsy' who hired the unit in Wakefield, West Yorks., and was responsible for warehousing the drugs. The operation was smashed after gangsters from the Merseyside area delivered the drugs, thought to have been smuggled to the UK from Spain, and were followed by police. Amphetamines were also seized from a property in Cleckheaton, West Yorkshire, where Price's son-in-law Weaver ran his own operation processing and dealing the drug. Graham Lee who originally fled to Benidorm after the seizure in October 2008 was arrested on his return to the UK. Judge Kerry Macgill said: 'Criminals placed a considerable amount of trust in Price. The cannabis found was a huge amount. This was a professional operation on a grand scale.' Det Insp Stuart Spencer, of West Yorkshire Police, said: 'This investigation was protracted involving a sophisticated criminal gang with associates across Europe. They were extremely conversant with the importation of commodities and their distribution throughout the north. 'Removing this network undoubtedly had an impact upon the availability of drugs, minimizing the misery they bring to communities.
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