FIVE members of a drug ring worth over £900,000 have been jailed for a total of 61 years.
A court heard how police smashed the cocaine supply and money laundering conspiracy after gang members were put under months of surveillance as they ferried drugs and cash around the city.
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Leeds Crown Court heard married couple Lee and Michelle Brook were stopped as they drove with their young child along Abbey Road, Kirkstall, on September 30, 2016.
Officers seized four kilos of 90 per cent-pure cocaine, worth up to £400,000, from the vehicle.
Mobile phones in the car were constantly ringing as police carried out the search.
The couple’s home on Littlemoor Crescent, Pudsey, Leeds was searched and a further 3.6 kg of cocaine and 787g of ecstasy were seized from the property.
Benzocaine - a cutting agent for drugs - was found along with a drugs press, dealer bags and a blender contaminated with drugs.
Investigations revealed that three other gang members - Andrew Turner, Lee Mabbott and Michael Lumb - were all in contact with each other as police searched the house in Pudsey.
A car registered to Mabbott also drove past the house at the time of the raid.
Angus McDonald, prosecuting, said: “That was evdience of the panic of the members of the group as they desperately tried to work out what happened to the cocaine.”
A kilo of cocaine worth around £68,000 was also seized from a van stopped in Leeds on October 27, 2016.
During the operation Leslie Yates was stopped and arrested by police as he transported a bag containing £59,000 of cash.
Drugs worth £650,000 and £255,000 in cash was seized during the police operation.
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Turner, of Wynford Terrace, was jailed for 20 years after being found guilty of conspiracy to supply cocaine and conspiracy to transfer criminal property.
Judge Tom Bayliss, QC, described Turner as the “senior partner” in the conspiracy.
Mabbott 37, of Queenswood Drive, Headingley, was jailed for 18 years after being convicted of the same offences. He was described as playing a “leading role”.
Lumb, 38, of Cranmer Close, Moortown, was also found guilty of conspiracy to supply cocaine and was jailed for 13 years.
Lee Brook, 33, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, possession of cocaine with intent to supply and possession of MDMA with intent to supply. He was jailed for nine years.
Leslie Yeats, 43, of Thornhill Place, Upper Wortley, was found guilty of conspiracy to transfer criminal property and was jailed for 18 months.
Michelle Brook, 31, pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine with intent to supply and possession of MDMA with intent to supply.
She will be sentenced at a later date.
Det Cheif Insp Warren Stevenson of West Yorkshire Police’s Protective Services (Crime) Division, said:
“These individuals supplied large amounts of illegal drugs. Illegal drugs cause misery in our communities and these people chose to involve themselves in this vile trade which causes so much pain and suffering.
“They now have time inside to consider the consequences of their actions.
The Evening Post would like to clarify that on October 12, 2016, Lee Mabbott was walking along Harrogate Road with a child when he was stopped. He was carrying a Morrisons bag for life which contained £109,000 in cash.
An earlier version of the story attributed this to Turner.
We apologise for the error.