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Drug dealer fails in appeal against 10-year jail sentence

By David Cosgrove | Oldbury | Crime | Published:

A criminal who was jailed for his role in a serious drug dealing organisation in the Black Country must serve his 10-year sentence, top judges have ruled.

Erion Shyti, 39, was linked to conspiracies to deal in cocaine and in cannabis, which was grown at three drugs ‘factories’ in Oldbury and Halesowen.

The organisation, said to be ‘ongoing, significant and wide-ranging’, was smashed after a police surveillance operation during 2016.

Shyti, of no fixed address, admitted two counts of plotting to supply cocaine and one of conspiracy to supply cannabis. He was jailed for a total of 10 years at Birmingham Crown Court in April last year.

Dismissing his appeal against the sentence, judges said he deserved what he got for conspiracies which involved large quantities of illegal drugs.

Judge Michael Topolski QC told London’s Appeal Court evidence gathered by police suggested that the gang bought cocaine in one-kilo batches. It was then divided up and sold on in smaller quantities for profit.

The cannabis was grown in drugs ‘factories’ in Brookfields Road and Pitcairn Road, Oldbury, and Bloomfield Street West, in Halesowen.

Plants worth well over £100,000 were found during police raids, together with evidence of how the various members of the gang split the proceeds.

Lawyers for Shyti argued that, because consecutive sentences had been passed for the offences, the total punishment was ‘excessive’.

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But Judge Topolski, sitting with Lady Justice Sharp and Mr Justice Dingemans, rejected the argument and upheld the 10-year term.

“It was entirely open to the sentencing judge to pass consecutive sentences, provided that the end result reflected the overall criminality,” he said.

“We are entirely satisfied that it did. We have no doubt that the judge did take all matters before him into account in arriving at the sentence he ultimately passed in this case.”

The appeal was dismissed.

David Cosgrove

By David Cosgrove
Chief Reporter - @davidcosgrove_

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