Peter Kane, 29 and of Liverpool, was sentenced at Bristol Crown Court on Thursday 29 October 2015 after being convicted of conspiracy to supply heroin following a lengthy trial at the same court.
As part of a Metropolitan Police and later Dorset Police investigation, it was identified that during October and November 2013 Peter Kane and Kulraj Gill orchestrated the supply of heroin with Samir Begg.
The Kane network utilised Rassool Hassan-Baigi, Gary Fudge and Melvyn Tapper as trusted and complicit couriers who were later identified by police. When they were arrested, multiple kilos of heroin were seized.
Police action disrupted the operation in late November 2013 and Kane fled the country. He was sought by UK authorities and was arrested in the Netherlands on 21 October 2014.
Kane’s fellow conspirators have all faced various drug charges in court and have been jailed for a total of 28 years and eight months.
Custodial sentences imposed were:
Gary Fudge, 31 and living in Bournemouth at the time of his arrest, was sentenced to four years. He was arrested at Bournemouth train station on 8 November 2013 where police seized 984g of heroin.
Kulraj Gill, 41 and of Romford in Essex, was jailed for eight and half years.
Samir Begg, 36 and of Ipswich, was sentenced to five years three months.
Melvyn Tapper, 59 and of Romford, was sentenced to five years three months. He was arrested on 20 November 2013 after being stopped in his car by police on the M6 motorway in Cheshire. Officers seized 987 grams from his vehicle.
Rassool Hassan-Baigi, 37 and also of Romford, received five years eight months. He was stopped by police travelling from Liverpool to the Runcorn area. Officers discovered 1.72kg of heroin (diamorphine) in his vehicle with an estimated street value £300k.
DI Tony Hubbard, of Zephyr which aims to disrupt, dismantle and destroy organised crime across the South West of England, said after Kane’s trial: “This was a detailed and protracted investigation conducted against a sophisticated organised crime group run by Peter Kane, which had an impact on communities, not only across the south west but nationally.
“The compelling case presented was uncovered by investigations mounted by Metropolitan Police and Dorset Police, whose evidence was crucial to the prosecution case and led to the successful conviction of Peter Kane.”
During sentencing, His Honour Judge Hart said that he found Kane to be “clever, calculating and steeped in criminality”. He said Kane had played a leading role in this highly organises drugs conspiracy which operated on a wide geographical scale.
Judge Hart commended a number of individuals, including the Regional Zephyr case team, police officers and staff from Dorset Police, the Metropolitan Police, and Merseyside Police, as well as officers from the Netherlands Police who assisted with Kane’s arrest. He also commended Crown Prosecution Service legal and casework staff.
Detective Chief Inspector Stewart Balmer, of Dorset Police’s Major Crime Investigation Team, said: “This was a detailed investigation which involved complex and lengthy investigations by officers in Dorset and elsewhere in the country.
“Kane’s actions directly impacted on the communities of Dorset and his conviction and lengthy prison sentence imposed will send a very clear message that drug dealing will not be tolerated in our communities and we will take action to take these individuals off the street.”