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Industry Insights

Client Acquitted of Large Scale Conspiracy to Supply Class A Drugs

By 4 June 2024No Comments3 min read

Following a Trial lasting 17 days, Andy Rootsey’s client, ‘AB’ was acquitted at Guildford Crown Court of conspiracy to supply cocaine on an industrial scale across the Southeast.

AB was said to be at the very head of the hierarchy of the conspiracy and the clear leader of the organised crime group. He faced an indictment containing five other defendants, all of whom had previously entered guilty pleas to the conspiracy.

The trial was part of a wider Police operation across the Surrey and Southeast areas, where over 40 other suspects had been arrested, convicted and received significant sentences for serious drugs offences over a significant period.

The Prosecution case included evidence of AB speaking in numerous conversations on a covert listening device placed within his vehicle, text messaging and EncroChat messages, observation evidence, cell site evidence, drug seizures, and Prosecution drugs expert evidence.

It was alleged that from AB’s own recorded words, obtained from the covert listening device, that his business model was clear and those involved in the conversations had access to facilitate the trafficking of multiple kilos of cocaine. The recordings from the covert device were said to provide evidence of the most compelling kind, as AB was said to speak in frank terms about his drugs business and monies owed. The figures mentioned were considerable and consistent with wholesale drug dealing. The Prosecution alleged that the recordings provided evidence not only of AB’s involvement in the conspiracy to supply cocaine but also of his leadership role, and the scale and longevity of his cocaine business.

Telephone and Encrochat phone messages were said to contain evidence of the purchase of multiple kilos of cocaine. The Prosecution also relied upon evidence from other phones seized during the course of the investigation which were said to show the conspiracy in action. Observation evidence revealed several meetings where drugs were said to have been transferred and also revealed AB in company with a defendant purchasing a bulking agent. Evidence of AB speaking on the recording device was interpreted and suggested by the prosecution to also contain evidence of him providing instructions on the mixing and adulterating of kilogram blocks of high purity cocaine.

AB denied all involvement in the cocaine conspiracy but had previously entered guilty pleas to conspiracy to supply cannabis and being concerned in the supply of amphetamine and ketamine.  It was the defence case that the Prosecution evidence provided evidence only of his involvement in those offences and not of his involvement in the cocaine conspiracy.

Following deliberations lasting 10 ½ hours AB was found Not Guilty of conspiracy to supply cocaine.

Charles Langley of 2 Bedford Row was instructed Counsel.