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Five year prison sentence for Burry Port cannabis dealer

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drugA BURRY PORT drug dealer was one of two men sentenced to a total of more than 14 years in jail for importing £1.5m of cannabis from South Africa into Avonmouth.

Despite hatching an elaborate plan to import 650kgs of cannabis – concealed in crates containing furniture – which was being imported from South Africa, the organised crime group from Swansea, were thwarted by Zephyr, the south west regional organised crime unit, working in partnership with the National Crime Agency and UK Border Force.

Karl Richter-John, 43, formerly of Spain, now Rhondda Street, Mount Pleasant, Swansea has been jailed for nine years. He will also be subject to Serious Crime Prevention Order when he is released from prison, which places various restrictions on the use of mobile phones and computers.

And Malcolm John (aged 52 years), of Penybryn Avenue, Burry Port, was sentenced to five years and four months.

The court previously heard that on 1 October 2013 a shipment of seven creates – believed to contain furniture being imported from South Africa – was  given a routine inspection by UKBF.

They discovered 650kgs of cannabis in three of the crates, which triggered an investigation to discover the UK recipient of the intended cargo and those involved in the ambitious plan.

As the lorry was destined to deliver the load to a storage yard in Avonmouth, near Bristol, Zephyr was notified and launched the investigation.

Detectives assumed the role of delivery drivers and called the intended recipient to advise the cargo was on route.

One of the defendants – Malcolm John – agreed to take receipt of the cargo at the storage yard. The owner of the yard knew nothing of the illegal cargo that had been arranged by John. When the lorry arrived at the yard the cargo Malcolm John took receipt of the crates which were placed into two shipping containers rented from the storage yard.

Malcolm John returned to his home address in the Burry Port area of Swansea. He contacted Karl Richter-John – believed to be the ringleader of the operation – who was living in Spain and was later extradited to the UK.

Malcolm John was later arrested from his home address and a search of a lock-up unit in Heol-y-Gars Road in Swansea undertaken, where a 20-tonne press and packaging material – used in drug trafficking operations – was discovered.

At the end of the trial, HH Judge Roach commended the Zephyr officers on the quality of their investigation.

DI Austin Goss of Zephyr said: “We are extremely pleased with the sentences handed out today which deliver a clear message to those involved in the illegal activity of drug dealing that it will not be tolerated.

“We remain committed to dismantle, disrupt and destroy organised crime and illegal drug activity in the South West region. This was complex multi-agency operation which will have a significant impact for the local community in South Wales and the South West region.

“This operation has been a team effort with Zephyr officers and staff, working closely with colleagues in the National Crime Agency and UK Border Agency.

“The sentences should send out a clear warning to those involved in drug activity that they will be hunted down and put before the courts.

“We will now begin the process under the Proceeds of Crime Act to seek a confiscation order from the courts to ensure that any benefits of the crime are removed from the offenders,” DI Goss added.

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M4 closed westbound following lorry fire near Swansea

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A SECTION of the M4 near Swansea was shut on Monday (Aug 8) due to a vehicle fire.

The westbound section of the motorway, between junction 47 at Penllergaer and junction 48 at Hendy closed.

Emergency services were called to the scene, and there was queuing traffic in the area.

Traffic monitoring service Inrix reported: “M4 Westbound closed, queueing traffic due to vehicle fire between J47 A48 (Penllergaer / Swansea West Services) and J48 A4138 Pontardulais Road”

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Police appeal after Llanelli assault: victim required hospital treatment

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DYFED POWYS POLICE is investigating an assault which occurred on Regalia Terrace, Llanelli, Carmarthenshire at about 12.05am, Sunday 3rd July.

The victim required hospital treatment.

Officers have carried out all possible lines of enquiry, and are now appealing for help from the public.

They would like to identify the person in the CCTV image, who may have information that could help the investigation.

Anyone who knows who the person is, or if you believe you are pictured, contact Dyfed-Powys Police.

This can also be done either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk or phoning 101.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

Please quote reference DP-20220703-011

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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Charity

Successful camping and riding weekends raise £1,400 for lifesaving charity

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MEMBERS from the North Wales branch Trail Riders Fellowship have presented the Wales Air Ambulance with a £1,400 donation following its successful camping and trail riding charity weekends.

The successful fundraiser, which was held for its members near Dolgellau, attracted around 60 members who took part over two weekends.

During both weekends donations were collected from each rider taking part. The riders took to the lanes both north and south of River Mawddach, where they were blessed with lovely weather.

This is not the first time they’ve supported the Wales Air Ambulance. They’ve raised around £3,000 during two previous events.

Reflecting on why the Wales Air Ambulance helicopter charity was chosen to benefit from the event, treasurer for North Wales TRF group, Mike Rowlands said: “We chose the Wales Air Ambulance knowing what a difference it can make when called upon to attend emergencies to all members of the public. It can’t be overstated how important our members see the value of this wonderful charity to the people of Wales.

“The club members are proud to contribute towards keeping the Wales Air Ambulance flying.”

The North Wales branch of the Trail Riders Fellowship promotes responsible trail riding on legal routes around North Wales.

The Wales Air Ambulance Charity emergency service offers advanced critical care and is often described as a ‘Flying ED’. The on-board consultants and critical care practitioners are highly skilled and carry some of the most pioneering medical equipment in the world. They can deliver blood transfusions, administer anaesthesia, and undertake emergency operations at the scene of the incident, before flying the patient directly to specialist care. 

Wales Air Ambulance’s Community Fundraiser Debra Sima was recently presented with the cheque of £1,400 by the North Wales Trail Riders Fellowship members at The Parrot, Drury.

A delighted Debra said: “A huge thank you to all the organisers and riders who took part in the two weekend events. We’re delighted that the North Wales branch of Trail Riders Fellowship has once again decided to support our lifesaving 24/7 charity. In total they’ve raised £4,400 for our Charity during three separate fundraisers, which is amazing. Their continued support will enable us to keep our helicopters in the air and our rapid response vehicles on the road. Thank you so much.”

There are several ways that the public can continue to support the Wales Air Ambulance. These include online donations, signing up to the Charity’s Lifesaving Lottery or by coming up with their own innovative ways to fundraise at home. Further information can be found via www.walesairambulance.com.

Alternatively, a £5 text-message donation can be made by texting the word HELI to 70711.

For more information on Trail Riders Fellowship visit http://trf.org.uk/

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