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Pair jailed after drugs and shotguns find
This arsenal of sawn-off shotguns and ammunition was found at a make-shift drug factory raided by police in Bradford.
Two men were yesterday jailed after police unearthed the “criminals’ storeroom” in the padlocked cellar of the house in Devonshire Terrace, Manningham, during a concerted operation to target heavily armed drug dealing gangs in the city.
Officers swooped on a property and seized the shotguns, ammunition, balaclava masks and a stash of cocaine and heroin, Bradford Crown Court heard.
Mohammed Rabnawaz, 26, who was caught with the keys to the padlocked drugs den, was jailed for eight years.
Jameel Ahmed, 22, linked by his fingerprints to cocaine found hidden in an old washing machine in the cellar, was locked up for three years.
After the case, PC Martyn Gilpin, of the Bradford District Quartz Team, warned that criminals involved with guns and drugs would be vigorously tracked down and brought to justice.
He said: “We will be relentless in pursuing anyone who delves into the world of drugs and guns, damaging our communities through their activity.
“This pair, for instance, were arrested as part and parcel of the proactive Operation Sabredale aimed at tackling these very issues.
“I am glad to see they will now spend some considerable time behind bars and removed from the potential to bring harm to our neighbourhoods.”
PC Gilpin was commended by Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC for closing down a “dangerous and sophisticated drugs factory.”
Prosecutor Jonathan Sharp said police raided the property on July 4 last year and seized three quarters of a kilo of cocaine and heroin, valued at £36,000, two sawn off shotguns, cartridges and drugs cutting agents, scales and bags.
“This was an operating area for cutting and division of Class A drugs for commercial dealing,” Mr Sharp said.
The court was told that Rabnawaz’s DNA was found on the double barrelled shotgun and a balaclava.
He was living opposite the house and was arrested in the street.
Rabnawaz pleaded guilty to two offences of having a prohibited firearm and two of possession of Class A drugs with intent to supply.
Ahmed, also living on Devonshire Terrace, admitted possession of cocaine with intent to supply.
Rabnawaz’s barrister, Robin Frieze, said it was his uncle’s house and local men would come to use a gym in the cellar.
Rabnawaz got into debt and pressure was put on him to lend out the rear area of the cellar.
“It was a catastrophic decision for his life because once he had said “yes” the first time, there was no going back,” Mr Frieze said.
Since then, members of Rabnawaz’s family had been shot at and some had fled to Pakistan.
Oliver Jarvis, for Ahmed, said: “This is never going to happen again. He has embarrassed his family and he is deeply, deeply ashamed.”
Judge Durham Hall told Rabnawaz: “You had a choice. You could have said “no” and, of course, now you wish you had.”
Jailing Ahmed, the judge stressed that he had no connection with the guns.