TWO Birmingham brothers behind a heroin street supply chain have been jailed for 20 years after being netted in an undercover West Midlands Police operation.
Asif and Gultasib Khan – age 31 and 34 – are among the latest dealers brought to justice by the force’s Gangs & Organised Crime Unit as part of an on-going campaign tackling drug supply in the city.
The recent focus of the investigation has been Aston and Handsworth.
It’s led to the seizure of Class A drugs – largely heroin and crack cocaine – with a street value of up to £300,000, plus the recovery of handguns and ammunition.
Police have also frozen bank accounts used by the men whilst cars and properties they owned have been seized pending enquiries likely to see them sold under the Proceeds of Crime Act with money put back into the public purse.
Today’s convictions at Birmingham Crown Court bring the total number of men jailed since the operation launched in 2009 to 24, with more major players in the city’s drug supply scene in custody awaiting trial.
Asif Khan, from Amblecote Avenue in Great Barr, and Gultasib Khan from Onibury Road, Handsworth, admitted conspiring to supply heroin and firearms offences and were each jailed for 10 years.
Two other men – Harmesh Rangla and Sikander Aslam, brother-in-law to the Khans– also pleaded guilty to supplying Class A drugs.
Rangla from Hampstead Road in Handsworth was sentenced to two-and-a-half-years in prison, whilst 24-year-old Aslam from Earlsbury Gardens in Aston – who also admitted possessing a handgun – was sentenced to eight years behind bars.
Sergeant Tony Smith from the Organised Crime Unit, said: “These men were involved with the supply of large quantities of heroin and supported their criminal activities with the use of firearms.
“This latest success saw heroin seized with a potential street value of £280,000; this valuation is backed up by the large amounts of cash recovered alongside identified cash deposits paid into the men’s bank accounts.
“Without doubt these individuals are significant middle market dealers operating in central Birmingham with identified criminal assets way beyond those possessed by lesser street dealing drug suppliers.”
The Khan brothers’ street supply business was smashed last summer when police raided their home addresses and uncovered half a kilo of heroin, wraps of crack cocaine and £12,000 in cash.
Detectives identified that the pair had hired 36-year-old Rangla to help prepare drugs for sale and all three were charged and remanded in custody.
Following a successful bail application, Gultasib Khan was released as the case progressed through court – but on August 31 he was spotted by undercover officers handing a package to Aslam in Antorbus Road, Handsworth.
Police stopped Aslam’s Vauxhall Vectra minutes later and discovered the package contained an ‘American Bulldog’ .44 calibre revolver with several rounds of ammunition.
A property registered to Aslam in Aldridge was subsequently searched and half a kilo of heroin and £87,000 cash was found.
And last week (July 5) two other men – Kamran Afser from Frederick Road in Aston and Kamran Nabi from Albert Road, Aston – were also jailed for conspiracy to supply heroin as part of the operation.
It followed police raids in April 2011 in Frederick Road when more than two kilos of heroin, quantities of cocaine and cannabis, plus 11 9mm bullets were uncovered, whilst almost £12,000 cash was found hidden in the oven of a neighbouring house.
Nabi – said in court to be the drug haul’s “controller” who used Afser to store and supply narcotics on his behalf – was handed a seven-and-a-half year prison term with Afser jailed for four years.
DS Smith, added: “Interrogation of Nabi’s bank accounts revealed he’d paid in over £50,000 cash…this was later proved to be drug money which, along with his home, is eligible for seizure under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
“Properties and cars owned by the Khans have also been held by the Crown as criminal profits and will actively be pursued by the authorities.
“This is a long-standing, continuing operation that to date has seen 24 people involved in drug supply being put behind bars for almost 120 years.
“Detectives have recently made other notable arrests, including men suspected of importing drugs into the region, plus top-level conspirators.
“No-one involved in the import, supply, preparation or sale or drugs in Birmingham can rest easy – we are infiltrating their networks and offenders face long prison terms plus losing any cash or belongings obtained through drug dealing.
“Drugs bring misery to the lives of many people and communities where this kind of activity takes place, whilst drugs are linked to wider criminality like burglary. It’s a priority issue for us to tackle and, as this operation proves, we’ve taken giant strides to clean up Birmingham’s streets.”