Crimes included prolific drug supply, armed robberies and firearms offences
Six men have been sentenced following a long-term operation into an organised criminal network that was involved in the prolific supply of drugs, firearms offences and large-scale handling of stolen goods from organised burglaries and armed robberies.
The Criminal Network was headed by Michael O'Driscoll, 58, of New Malden who was sentenced to a total of 16 years' imprisonment. l ran two businesses - a florist called 'Flowers in the Wind' and 'David Simmons Jewellers' - in the Garratt Lane area of Wandsworth. These commercial premises were used to support his criminality and that of others across the UK
O'Drsicoll had pleaded guilty to encouraging or assisting in the commission of an offence (introduced another to supply a s1 firearm, namely a 9mm automatic handgun), supplying Class A drugs (MDMA), being concerned in the supply of Class B drugs (ketamine), offering to supply Class A drugs (ecstasy tablets) to another, encouraging or assisting the commission of an offence (planning an armed warehouse robbery), conspiracy to handle stolen goods, attempting to handle stolen goods and transferring criminal property, namely £35,000.
David Lee Simmons, 38, of Garratt Lane was sentenced to two years and eight months' imprisonment for manufacturing a prohibited weapon (stun gun), conspiracy to handle stolen goods and attempting to handle stolen goods.
Robert D'Acosta, David Terry Simmons (father of David Lee Simmons), Kevin Edwards-Pritchard and Karl Couling were also members of the network and were also been sentenced and jailed.
The men were all sentenced at Kingston Crown Court on Friday 26 May, having previously pleaded guilty to numerous offences.
Detective Inspector Philip McInerney, from the London Crime Squad, said, "This operation has had a significant impact on the supply of drugs across the south-east. A fully established organised crime network has been dismantled and these men now face lengthy prison sentences.
"The harm they have done, not only by supplying drugs, but also by providing firearms and committing robberies, is clear for all to see. They are all now facing lengthy prison sentences.
"We remain committed to taking drugs and firearms off the Capital's streets and will arrest those involved in their supply."
Detectives launched 'Operation Ruda' in May 2015 to tackle an organised crime network (OCN) that was headed by O'Driscoll. It was quickly established that he was linked to the other five defendants.
By December 2016, officers had gathered extensive intelligence and evidence against the OCN.
On Wednesday 25 January this year, more than 200 officers and support staff were deployed to arrest numerous suspects and search 20 addresses across the south-east.
A search of the Wandsworth jewellery shop recovered stolen jewellery and £32,000 in cash.
A total of 15 people were arrested for a variety of offences, including conspiracy to supply firearms and drugs, conspiracy to commit armed robbery and the handling of stolen goods on a commercial scale. One person has been informed that no further action will be taken; eight others remain on bail pending further enquiries.
May 29, 2017