Gang who made 'regular trips to Blackpool to collect drugs' jailed for almost 50 years
Members of a Leeds drug dealing gang have been given jail sentences totalling almost 50 years over a major cocaine and heroin supply conspiracy.
The conspiracy 'spanned the Pennines', with gang members making regular trips to Blackpool to collect drugs before storing them at properties in Leeds.
Leeds Crown Court heard the six-month conspiracy involved at least 10kg of high-purity Class A drugs before police arrested the offenders.
The court heard there was also evidence that one member of the gang, Sebastian Matande, was involved in country lines drug dealing.
Six defendants were jailed at Leeds Crown Court after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.
Matande and another defendant, Munashe Munyurwa, were described in court as playing a leading role in the conspiracy.
Both men were also sentenced for a brutal machete attack on a 15-year-old boy in Leeds.
A judge described how the background to that attack was drug gang rivalry in the Chapeltown and Harehills areas of Leeds.
Six members of the gang were sentenced at Leeds Crown Court after pleading guilty to two counts of conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
- Sebastian Matande, 27, of Holborn Towers, Woodhouse. Matande also pleaded guilty to further drug supply offences outside of the conspiracy and to an offence of unlawful wounding, relating to a machete attack on a 15-year-old boy. He was jailed for 15 years and six months.
- Munashe Munyurwa, 23, of St Martins Gardens, Chapel Allerton. Munyurwa also pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding and further drug dealing offences. He was jailed for 12 years.
- Jonathan Ndombasi, 23, of Asket Drive, Seacroft. He was jailed for eight years.
- Darnell Anderson-Browne, 23, of Oatland Green, Sheepscar. He was jailed for four years.
- Sydney Angus, 24, of Lidgett Lane, Gledhow. She was jailed for four years.
- Anisha Golden, 24, of Arthington Place, Hunslet. She was jailed for four years.
- A seventh member of the gang, Leeham Stewart, described in court as "the chief executive officer" of the illegal operation, has also pleaded guilty to the conspiracy.
He is due to be sentenced at a later date.
Mark McKone, prosecuting, said the defendants were involved in the wholesale bulk buying of high purity heroin and cocaine during the conspiracy which took place between February and August 2019.
Mr McKone said: "The prosecution say that Leeham Stewart was the person who was in charge of this operation.
"Leeham Stewart was involved right throughout the time period. He usually got others to move drugs for him.
"He used many different cars.
"He features a lot in the telephone evidence, especially shortly before and shortly after drugs have been transferred."
The court heard the defendants are all from Leeds but a major part of the operation saw some of them making journeys to Blackpool.
Munyurwa, Matande, Ndombasi and Angus made regular trips during the conspiracy.
Police recovered empty packaging from a 1kg block of cocaine at Munyurwa's home.
Messages recovered from Matande’s phone revealedhow he was responsible for organising a storehouse for drugs.
The court heard Sydney Angus is the girlfriend of Matande and she helped her boyfriend with his drug dealing business.
Angus drove to Blackpool to take or collect drugs and she allowed others to use her car to go there for the same purpose.
Mr McKone said Golden had a close relationship with Stewart and performed the important function of storing drugs.
She would take delivery of drugs from one defendant and then hand them on to another defendant when they were ready for sale.
This meant Stewart could avoid being caught with the drugs himself.
Sentencing the gang members, Judge Robin Mairs said: "This involved the wholesale trade of class A drugs.
"It was clear to me that this was, both in quality and quantity, not the trading of wraps to addicts on the street.
"Geographically it was widespread. It spanned the Pennines."
Programme Precision is West Yorkshire Police's partnership response to serious and organised crime.
It is led by Detective Superintendent Carl Galvin.
After the sentencing hearing, he said: "The aim of Programme Precision is to bring police and partners together to rid the county’s streets of those intent on causing harm and misery through serious and organised criminality.
"Thanks to the painstaking work of Programme Precision, six people are now serving a combined sentence of almost 50 years.
"They have time inside to consider the consequences of their actions.
"Through Programme Precision we will continue to work with our partners to target this type of criminality."
It is thanks to our loyal readers that we can continue to provide the trusted news, analysis and insight that matters to you.
For unlimited access to our unrivalled local reporting, you can take out a subscription HERE and help support the work of our dedicated team of reporters.