Firearms and ammunition seized as two Leeds men arrested as part of Operation Venetic

Two Leeds men have been arrested as part of a National Crime Agency investigation into the supply of firearms.

By Daniel Sheridan
Thursday, 9th July 2020, 8:18 pm
Updated Thursday, 9th July 2020, 8:20 pm

Last week the NCA announced that it had been working with international law enforcement since 2016 to target EncroChat – the supplier of encrypted devices used by criminals worldwide to coordinate the planning and distribution of illicit commodities.

On Tuesday April 14, Paul Shepherd, aged 42, of Stainbeck Lane, Leeds, was stopped in his car by West Yorkshire Police officers.

Following a search of the car Class A drugs were found and he was arrested.

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Officers searching his home recovered two firearms – a Glock semi-automatic pistol and a Howa bolt-action rifle – as well as 200 rounds of ammunition and small quantities of cannabis and crack cocaine.

Shepherd was charged with the possession of a firearm and class A drugs and was remanded to prison. His trial is due to start in October at Leeds Crown Court.

A second man, Carl O’Flaherty, aged 35, of Leysolme Terrace, Leeds, was arrested on Sunday June 14 and charged the next day with conspiracy to possess and supply firearms.

He was remanded to custody and is due to appear at Leeds Crown Court on 13 July 2020.