A man who fled abroad after evading arrest on drugs supply offences was sentenced to six years in prison in Luton Crown Court today, Wednesday, June 18.
Mohammed Aleem, 25, formerly of Ford End Road Bedford, was wanted by police in 2010 after disappearing during the investigation into an organised crime group supplying drugs in Bedford and beyond.
Aleem went to Pakistan, but recently contacted detectives saying he wanted to come back and face the consequences. He pleaded guilty in April at Luton Crown Court to conspiracy to supply crack cocaine and heroin.
Aleem’s brother Omar Khayam, 31, also formerly of Ford End Road, Bedford, is already serving 13 years in prison, having been sentenced in November 2010 for his part in the same conspiracy; alongside Mohammad Arfaan, 31, then of Chestnut Avenue, Bedford who received six years imprisonment.
The police investigation started in December 2009, when officers found heroin with an estimated street value in excess of £2.6million at a flat in Ashburnham Road, Bedford. With the huge haul of heroin was 325g of crack cocaine, 25kg of cutting agents, a hydraulic drug press and £124,000 in cash.
Piecing together where the drugs came from, and who was responsible for them, took many months. It resulted in search warrants involving armed and unarmed police officers in Queen’s Park, Bedford.
Two men are still wanted in connection with the operation.
Det Insp Rob Regan, who was working on the case, said he was pleased to have another drug dealer behind bars.
He said: “This particular seizure was a very high value, with a high purity level.
“The quantities were so large, drugs were actually being mixed in washing up bowls and there was so much white powder in the kitchen of the flat at Ashburnham Road it looked more like the occupants had been mixing plaster.”
“At the time, this was a very high profile operation but we had a lot of support from the local community, so it’s pleasing to be able to let people know that we are still chasing offenders and don’t give up no matter how long it takes.”
He added: “We’re always keen to hear from members of the public who have information on drugs and we’re still working on recovering the two outstanding members of the gang.
“We have some information on where they may be but if anyone would like to contact us we’d be pleased to get information about that too.”
If you have information about drug dealing, call Crimestoppers anonymoulsy on 0800 555 111, text Bedfordshire Police on 07786 200011 or call the 24 hour non-emergency number 101.