Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Dealer Ran Cocaine Ring From Prison Cell

A convicted drug smuggler has admitted continuing to run an international cocaine ring by using a mobile phone from his prison cell.

Prisoner George Moon and the package which brought down his cocaine operation

The intercepted package which rumbled Moon's international operation

George Moon orchestrated the importation of drug packages from Panama and Venezuela into the UK and Ireland.

The 62-year-old ran the operation while serving 15 years at HMP Lindholme, near Doncaster, for supplying Class A substances.

Moon and five side-kicks pleaded guilty at Liverpool Crown Court. They were among 13 people arrested in November 2008.

Two men are already serving sentences in Ireland and another, Leo Morgan, has just begun a 10-year prison term in Panama, also for cocaine offences.

The arrests followed an investigation by the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA), which managed to intercept a two-kilo package of cocaine being couriered through Caracas International Airport, destined for an address in Cork.

Officers raided Moon's cell to find a mobile phone on which he had made hundreds of calls to Panama and Ireland, as well as a notebook containing the numbers of co-conspirators.

They believe he had been involved in organising the importation of at least 12 packages of cocaine, all sent via postal couriers.

Moon is currently serving a 15-year sentence for smuggling £3.5m worth of heroin and amphetamines into the UK from Holland by hiding it in a sport holdall in the back of a Heavy Goods Vehicle.

Moon and another man were also charged with smuggling contraband into a prison, in the form of sim cards and heroin.

It is thought that SOCA will now apply for a special order to be placed on Moon, which would make it a criminal offence for him to have possession of a mobile phone in prison.

Last year 4,000 mobile phones were seized from inmates of the UK's prison estate.

George Moon, 62, Lee Standeven, 24, Bilaal Khan, 27, Anthony Parry, 39, Harminder Singh, 25, and Abid Latif Hussain, 22, all pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import Class A controlled drugs.

Moon and Standeven also pleaded guilty to smuggling contraband into a prison.