Preston gang who made £2,000 per day transporting drugs across UK jailed

Three members of a Preston-based organised crime group have been jailed for more than 22 years for the supply of cocaine and heroin from Liverpool to Preston, Carlisle and Scotland.

Friday, 1st October 2021, 4:19 pm

Wesley Harriot, Paul Harrison and Shaun Burns each made £2,000 a day for their distribution of Class A drugs around the UK.

The trio appeared at Preston Crown Court yesterday, Thursday, September 30.

They had been arrested by police as part of Operation Silk, a campaign by the Targeted Crime Unit, focusing on the supply of Class A drugs in the city run by the Harriot organised crime group.

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Wesley Harriot, Paul Harrison and Shaun Burns pictured, left to right

Between April 1, 2020 and June 10, 2020, the group distributed kilo amounts of Class A Drugs between Liverpool, Preston, Carlisle and into Scotland.

Harriot used encrypted mobile phones known as EncroChat phones to communicate with his associates to organise the distribution of kilo amounts of Class A drugs.

The encrypted data was obtained by French authorities and disseminated to the National Crime Agency.

Harriot’s role within the conspiracy was to organise 11 drug runs where he instructed couriers Paul Harrison and Shaun Burns to collect and distribute drugs from Liverpool, transporting the product to Preston, Carlisle and Scotland.

Wesley Harriot will spend 11 and a half years behind bars

In total 7kg of cocaine and 5kg of heroin were distributed at a wholesale price of between £264,000 and £405,580.

On average the drugs lines were making £2,000 a day and over the three month conspiracy period made a total of £182,000.

The trio was arrested and charged with conspiracy to supply a Class A drug – cocaine and conspiracy to supply a Class A drug – heroin.

Harriot, 29, of no fixed address, was sent down for 11 and a half years.

Paul Harrison will remain in prison for six years

Burns, 29, of Parkfield Crescent, Lea, Preston was jailed for five years and four months.

And Harrison, 34, of no fixed address, was sentenced to six years behind bars.

Det Insp Roger Ashcroft, of Lancashire Police, said: “We are committed to tackling and disrupting drug-dealing activity and protecting vulnerable members of society.

“We would encourage anyone concerned about criminal activity in their area to contact the police, knowing that we will act on that information and take the appropriate action.”

Shaun Burns will spend five years and four months in prison

Anyone with concerns about drug-dealing or any other criminal activity in their area can call police on 101 or 999 in an emergency. Alternatively, Crimestoppers can be contacted, in confidence, on 0800 555 111.

A Proceeds of Crime Application has been made and scheduled for February 2022.

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