Drugs gang leader from Flintshire has assets seized

Reporter:

Staff reporter

ONE of the leaders of a gang which flooded North Wales with cocaine made a staggering £1.4 million out of the enterprise, a court heard yesterday.

Andrew Ross, 35, formerly of Llys y Faenol, Hawarden, is currently serving a 10-year prison sentence after he admitted conspiring to supply the Class A drug.

He was back at Mold Crown Court yesterday for a financial hearing under The Proceeds of Crime Act.

The figures were not in dispute and an agreed order was made by Judge Philip Hughes which declared Ross’s illegal benefit from drugs supply to be £1,400,465.

But having investigated the available assets, a confiscation order to the value of
£20,325 was made, based on items seized by police during the investigation into his activities.

Ross was formally given six months to pay or serve an additional 14 months in default.

A second man, Keiran Foulkes, 27, of Arfryn, Halkyn, was said to have made £620,000 out of the illegal supply, but his confiscation order was just £1,689.

However, the orders remain in place and should they come into funds in the future
then the prosecution can go after them for the rest of the money.

In September 2009, a total of nine members of the gang were jailed for a total of 44 and a half years.

The gang was smashed thanks to under-cover police work – codenamed Operation Tricorn.

Mold Crown Court was told that Ross, helped by others, organised the distribution of cocaine throughout North Wales.

The cocaine – with a 57 per cent purity, was ‘imported’ from Liverpool.

Police kept watch over many months to smash the gang and in addition to the observations, officers produced telephone records which showed contact between defendants at crucial times.

Drugs went from Rhyl to Anglesey and also into Flintshire – where they were further diluted at a house in Halkyn.

Ross, who ran a car wash business, was said to be one of the driving forces behind the conspiracy.

See full story in the Leader

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