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Drug dealer caught with 34kg of MDMA at M6 hotel fails to get sentence cut

Staffordshire | News | Published:

A man who was jailed after police rumbled a drug dealing plot centred on a motorway hotel has lost his Appeal Court bid for freedom.

Adib Samira Asfour, 27, of Kinlet Close, Wolverhampton, was one of three people locked away after police pounced following a handover in October 2013.

Events promoter Asfour was jailed for 10 years at Stafford Crown Court in February after he was found guilty of plotting to supply MDMA.

He appealed to top judges against his conviction, but saw his case thrown out by Lady Justice Sharp.

Giving judgment at London's Court of Appeal, she said there was ample evidence on which the jury could find Asfour guilty.

And she said the 10-year term which he received was richly deserved.

The court heard the plot was smashed after Staffs police received a tip from counterparts in the West Mercia force.

Accomplices Leah Parkes and Charles Hendrie, who had booked a room in the hotel on the M6, were stopped as they drove away.

Part of the 34kg haul was recovered in a car boot by police at the Hilton Park M6 services near junction 11 of the M6 at Cannock, while more was found in at a room in Holiday Inn in Stafford.

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A targeted stop-check by Central Motorway Police Group officers on the M6 southbound, between junctions 11and 10A, found the suitcase of drugs in the boot. The suitcase contained 16 packages of MDMA and both Hendrie and Parkes were arrested.

CCTV footage showed Asfour and another unidentified man turning up empty-handed and going into the room, before leaving with a bag.

Prosecutors said the bag which the men had picked up was likely to have contained three more kilos of the drug.

Investigation of mobile phones also produced evidence which suggested Asfour was involved in drug dealing.

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Lawyers for Asfour argued that his trial should have been stopped before the jury even began to consider his case.

But Lady Justice Sharp said Asfour's arrival at the hotel empty-handed and then leaving with the bag supported the prosecution case that he was guilty.

And the sheer amount of drugs which had been involved in the wider conspiracy justified the 10-year sentence.

'His role in the conspiracy was a significant one,' she told the court.

'He was involved in a conspiracy which involved 34.8 kilograms of MDMA.

'We think it is not arguable that a sentence of 10 years is arguable either manifestly excessive or wrong in principle.'

The court heard Parkes and Hendrie, both from Bury, Lancs, tried to appeal their sentences of seven and 10 years, but have already been refused permission.

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