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Secret surveillance led officers to find guns and ammunition in minicab footwell
A jury has been told more about how a secret police surveillance operation in Bradford led to the discovery of a ‘ready-to-use’ sawn-off shotgun and a rifle.
The weapons and some ammunition were found in the footwell of a minicab after police acted on a tip-off, they heard.
Armed officers had swooped on a minicab they had followed from Girlington to outside McDonald’s in Keighley after Shiraz Ali arranged the transfer of the weapons from prison and provided information about it in the hope of being released on bail, it was said.
Ishfaq Ali, 28, of Kensington Street, Toller Lane; Mohammed Amber, 25, of Upper Woodlands Road, Girlington, and Mobeen Hussain, 25, of Fairbank Road, Girlington, are on trial after denying charges of possessing a prohibited firearm and having another firearm and ammunition in a public place.
The jury has been told that Shiraz Ali, 31, also of Girlington, who is Ishfaq Ali’s brother, has pleaded guilty to the same offences as has Umear Hussain, 24, of Preston Place, Halifax.
Prosecutor Tom Storey told the jury that since receiving the tip-off, police had been recording calls made by Shiraz Ali to his brother on a prison payphone and on an illicit mobile arranging for the cab journey to happen and who to involve.
Yesterday, the court heard Detective Constable Kenneth Voce describe how he had been briefed on the operation to observe Umear Hussain and went to Fairbank Road in Girlington.
He saw a minicab arrive before seeing Umear Hussain go into a house. A minute later he came back out using his mobile, carrying a weighted black drawstring bag.
He was joined by a second man, Mobeen Hussain. They walked up the road together and Umear Hussain turned into Woodland Terrace.
Det Con Vose continued to follow Mobeen Hussain and saw him get into the cab. The officer walked past the vehicle, crossed the road and saw Mobeen Hussain and another man, Mohammed Amber, walk from the back of the cab and into a back alley.
He then saw the two men with Amber setting fire to a black bag.
Another plain-clothed officer joined Det Con Vose and they went to the now empty alley to search for the bag, while they were there they saw a man appear for a moment at the top of it.
He then reappeared with Mobeen Hussain and Amber and all three of them walked down the alley with Amber asking the officers what was going on. Det Con Vose said he ignored them and they walked off.
“We found what was clearly a bag smouldering on the floor,” Det Con Vose told the court.
The officer also told the jury he had believed Umear Hussain had still been in the cab when it was driven off.
The trial continues.