Four men in the United Kingdom find themselves behind bars after a drug bust thwarted their distribution network. According to reports, Thomas Lordan, 38, set up Independent Meat Ltd. as a front company to illicit imports into the U.K. Authorities launched a full-length investigation back in 2019 after catching three of Lordan’s accomplices with cocaine in two separate locations. The National Crime Agency first caught Francis Sullivan and Emanuel Jella exchanging a holdall containing 11kg of cocaine in the Kent village of Shadoxhurst. In August, NCA agents caught Mehmet Ali transporting 55kg of cocaine on an industrial estate in Lympne, Kent. The ensuing investigation found that Lordan’s network was distributing hundreds of kilograms of cocaine through Independent Meat Ltd.
U.K.’s National Crime Agency operations manager Matt McMillian said in a statement:
“This seizure of a significant amount of cocaine means it hasn’t ended up on the streets, fuelling violence and exploitation, […] We have dismantled a well-established drug supply route. Lordan provided the logistics with Sullivan and Ali acting as trusted lieutenants. They used a front company in an effort to disguise their criminality, thinking they could evade capture. But, as this case shows, if you engage in drug trafficking you will be caught.”
Lordan received a sentence of 18 years in prison, Ali 15 and a half years and Sullivan 10 years. Jella received the most lenient sentence with six years and seven months.