Bedford drugs gang member jailed after 20-mile police chase

A Bedford gang member who led police on an almost 20-mile chase after stealing the contents of a cannabis factory has been jailed for eight years.

By Harry Cheesewright
Monday, 9th December 2019, 9:50 am
Updated Monday, 9th December 2019, 9:55 am

Sanjay Clouden was one of 13 men who appeared in the dock at Harrow Crown Court to be sentenced over a range of serious drug offences linked to a Bedford gang.

The offences included smuggling drugs into prison via Luton Crown Court, as well as the aggravated burglary of a cannabis factory.

Alongside Clouden, one man was jailed for three years for smuggling drugs into prison; five men were handed prison sentences totalling more than 20 years, however these will run alongside significant jail terms already being served for other offences, while a further six were handed suspended prison sentences.

Clouden, 21, of no fixed address, was one of five men who drove from Bedford to Northumbria where they raided £35,000 of product from a cannabis factory.

Northumbria officers chased the gang for nearly 20 miles, during which Clouden drove into police vehicles in a bid to escape.

Dashcam footage captured the moment one of Clouden’s accomplices was pulled from the vehicle after eventually being stopped.

The five were all convicted of conspiracy to supply Class B drugs, with different members also convicted of burglary and weapon offences. Clouden was additionally convicted of dangerous driving.

Sanjay Clouden

Clouden was also one of seven members of the Kempston Block gang convicted of smuggling cannabis and tobacco into Luton Crown Court. The final defendant will be sentenced next week.

Gang members coming into the court used hollowed out trainers to bring the packages in.

These were then transferred over to fellow gang members who were in custody while they stood trial for a series of serious violence.

The men were all convicted of conspiracy to supply Class B drugs.

Reginal Joseph, 31, of Bunyan Road, Kempston, was one of those convicted of smuggling drugs into Luton Crown Court, and was also one of three men sentenced over a separate conspiracy to bring drugs into HMP Peterborough. He was locked up for a total of three years.

Detective Inspector Janine Graham, who led the investigation, said: “The audacity of this gang and their offending is almost beyond belief.

“These men were already standing trial for some shocking violence linked to drug dealing, including a kidnap and serious assault as well as a drive-by shooting.

“Yet they showed a complete disregard for the criminal justice system, and attempted to carry on dealing drugs even while they stood in the dock.

“The cannabis factory burglary and subsequent police pursuit shows a similar disregard for law and order by these gang members.

“The central theme running through this entire saga is drugs. This gang’s determination to keep selling these substances has fuelled all of their dangerous, violent and brazen behaviour.

“This is why tackling the supply of drugs is such a key focus for our force, and we are pleased that many of those involved in this particular trial are now serving lengthy spells behind bars.”