JAILED: Class A Midlands drug gang locked up for 130 YEARS

Thirteen members of a Midlands-wide drugs gang who peddled cocaine and heroin on the streets of Wolverhampton have been jailed for more than 130 years.

JAILED: Class A Midlands drug gang locked up for 130 YEARS
Asmirald Miraka was the lynchpin of the network

Led by 25-year-old Albanian Asmirald Miraka, the dealers imported millions of pounds worth of Class A drugs into the UK and distributed them across the Midlands until West Midlands Police busted the empire this year.

Miraka and his three Albanian couriers ran the operation from Birmingham, using specially adapted cars to transport at least £1.5 million of cocaine and heroin around the city and to Wolverhampton and Nottingham.

Wolverhampton dealers Levi Watson and Richard Chapman were part of Miraka's network, working alongside Adam Whiteley from Oldbury. All three are now behind bars.

Lynchpin Miraka co-ordinated couriers Desar Asllani, Arjol Cerriku and Aleks Asllani, who were in the UK illegally, to distribute kilos of cocaine between July 2015 and January this year.

Miraka regularly swapped mobile phones to try and avoid being detected, but officers used intelligence and covert tactics to monitor the Albanians and link the four men to three groups of Midland dealers.

Some of the seized drugs

They gang used cars, including an Audi A6 and a, Volvo with hidden compartments fitted - either behind the stereo dashboard or in the boot - to conceal the drugs.

Whiteley, 35, was used to broker deals and detectives discovered links between the Oldbury-based dealer and Wolverhampton pair Levi Watson and Richard Chapman who were dealing in Orslow Walk near their Park Village homes.

  • Asmirald Miraka, (25) Margaret Grove, Harborne; sentenced to 16 years, three months

  • Desar Asllani (30) Quinton Road, Harborne; sentenced to 10 years and nine months

  • Aleks Asllani (28) Quinton Road, Harborne; sentenced to 10 years and nine months

  • Arjol Cerriku (30) Haunch Lane, Birmingham; sentenced to 10 years and nine months

  • Adam Whiteley (35) of Wheatsheaf Road, Oldbury; sentenced to eight years

  • Levi Watson (29) Orslow Walk, Park Village, Wolverhampton; sentenced to seven years

  • Richard Chapman (22) Ellerton Walk, Park Village, Wolverhampton; sentenced to five years

  • Shazad Ali (29) Foxhall Road, Nottingham; sentenced to 15 years

  • Zarak Khan (27) Vale Crescent South, Nottingham; sentenced to 15 years

  • Shabaz Ali (27) Foxhall Road, Nottingham; sentenced to 15 years and 5 months

  • Clayton Stephenson (30) no fixed address, sentenced to eight years

  • Kieran Samuels (31) Fleming Way, Rednall; sentenced to six years

  • Aaron Clemenson (32) Power Crescent, Ladywood; sentenced to five years

In October last year Chapman, 22, ran from police after being spotted getting in and out of one of the vehicles. A kilo of cocaine was found discarded nearby and seized.

Meanwhile Watson, 29, aroused suspicion through his lavish lifestyle, producing an online rap video about drug dealing and bathing in money, as well as taking holidays abroad despite claiming to have no steady income.

These guns and ammunition were seized in Nottingham

Miraka's network also extended through Birmingham and to Nottingham.

The chain was connected to convicted dealer Clayton Stephenson, despite him serving a prison term for conspiracy to supply cocaine at the time.

Stephenson managed deals through associates Kieran Samuels and Aaron Clemenson, who were involved in a drugs exchange with Desar Asllani and Cerriku in Kings Heath, Birmingham, on November 27.

In Nottingham, officers tracked a delivery of three kilos of cocaine to Shahzad Ali, Shabaz Ali and Zarak Khan at an industrial unit in December.

L-R and top to bottom: Shabaz Ali, Shazad Ali, Aleks Asllani, Desar Asllani, Arjol Cerriku, Richard Chapman

Working alongside Nottinghamshire Police, more than 10 kilos of heroin and cocaine were seized along with a handgun, shotgun, ammunition and £100,000 in cash.

Miraka, Desar Asslani, Cerriku, Aleks Asllani, Whiteley, Shazhad Ali, Zarak Khan, Shabaz Ali and Watson pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

Chapman, Stephenson, Samuels and Clemenson were convicted following a six week trial at Birmingham Crown Court.

Cash, drugs and paraphernalia recovered by West Midlands Police

Stephenson was also convicted of using a phone in prison to orchestrate a drugs deal and Clemenson for possession of CS gas.

Along with drugs offences, Shazad Ali and Khan were also sentenced for possession of firearms and ammunition.

The gang were all jailed for a combined total of more than 132 years at Birmingham Crown Court yesterday.

Detective Constable Warren Moore, from West Midlands Police's Serious and Organised Crime Unit, said: "This was a sophisticated operation involving large amounts of cocaine and heroin.

"Miraka was the lynchpin in co-ordinating the supply of drugs to other dealers and there is no doubt this would have continued without police intervention.

"Drugs can ruin lives and communities and these sentences should act as a strong warning that those involved in such crime will feel the full force of the law."

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News