Sussex Police detectives have smashed a conspiracy which had trafficked more than 120 kilos of cocaine into Brighton and Hove.
Five men were sentenced to a total of 67 years at Hove Crown Court on Thursday (27 September) for drugs and money laundering offences, following a two-year investigation by detectives from the Sussex Police Serious Organised Crime Unit into the supply of cocaine via a ‘county lines’ phone system, into the city initially between March 2016 and July 2017.
Main photo shows £23,000 cash seized at one of the addresses when detectives made the first arrests in July 2017. (Image 1)
Each member of the conspiracy was described by Judge David Rennie as having had a leading role in the buying and directing of the sale of cocaine on a commercial scale.
Leonard Aga, 35, self-employed, of Trotwood, Chigwell, Essex, had pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, money laundering, and possession of cocaine. false identity documents. He was sentenced to 10 years and was described as having a “significant role” in the chain as a supplier.
Also sentenced, having previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, and money laundering, were Ilir Vakaj, 35, of Hampton Road, Teddington, Middx, give 16 years imprisonment, and Ilirjan Hasanaj, 31, of Windermere Road, Bournemouth, given 17 years imprisonment.
See photos of Vakaj (left), Aga (centre) and Hasanaj (right).
Hysni Tafa, 46, a builder, of Lea Bank, Luton, and Kujedesi Pista, 36, of Cardigan Street, Luton, had previously pleaded guilty to continuing the conspiracy to supply cocaine, between July 2017 and March 2018 once Aga’s activity had been disrupted by the police. Tafa and Pista have both now been sentenced to 12 years.
See photos of Pista (left) and Tafa (right).