A gang of Sheffield drug dealers made millions from their evil trade but will have to pay back just a tiny fraction – with two ordered to hand over just £1.
The seven members of the gang made a massive £2.6 million from dealing huge quantities of heroin, cocaine and crack, a Proceeds of Crime case at Sheffield Crown Court was told.
But they will only have to pay back around £20,000 – less than one per cent of what they made – because they had so few assets in their names.
The £20,000 they will have to pay back includes the sale of a BMW, worth more than £16,000, which is owned by one of the gang.
The remaining £4,000 is made up of cash found on gang members when they were arrested.
Ringleader Thenveer Hussain made a personal profit of almost £750,000 but was ordered to pay back just £1,901.09, cash that was seized from him when he was arrested.
One of his co-conspirators, taxi driver Mohammed Majid, who made £459,000 was told to pay back £1, while three others who made around £460,000 each were ordered to hand over a few hundred pounds found on them by police when they were arrested.
The men were part of 18 people involved in a multi-million pound drugs and money laundering operation who were caught by a huge undercover operation by South Yorkshire Police.
The Sheffield-based gang were responsible for the widespread supply and distribution of cocaine, crack cocaine and heroin to organised criminal gangs in London and throughout both South and West Yorkshire.
Police brought down the major drug dealing operation of Thenveer Hussain and his associates through three separate investigations lasting several years.
Those involved were eventually jailed in 2015 and earlier this year for a combined 130 years.
In 2013, officers from South Yorkshire’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit launched ‘Operation Magical’, a covert investigation into the massive drugs supply chain being run by Hussain from Sheffield and supplying crack, heroin and cocaine to dealers across Yorkshire and in London.
Raids in Yorkshire in 2014 led to the recovery of around £1m of drugs and nine people - seven men and two women - were sentenced in July 2015 to 80 years in prison.
The gang was nailed organising the supply of massive quantities of drugs around South Yorkshire and beyond – with a number of deliveries made by a taxi driver carrying drugs concealed in boxes of dog biscuits.
In February 2013, taxi driver Mohammed Majid was caught transporting 3kg of heroin and nearly 14g of crack cocaine to London.
Within his boot was a box of dog biscuits which contained 2.98kg of heroin, valued at £298,000 at street level.
In his passenger footwell was a paper bag containing a salt pot, within which was a further 78.9kg heroin and a cling film wrap of cocaine worth £1,370.
In another incident, detectives intercepted gang members travelling from Doncaster to Sheffield in a BMW, which led to a dramatic high-speed chase through the city.
Police later identified further criminal associates of Hussain who were continuing to assist in the running of his drug-dealing operation.
This led to the launch of two more investigations called ‘Operation Mimic’ and ‘Operation Magical Two’.
Those operations eventually led to the jailing of Hussain in January 2016 for 24 years, along with sentences for eight other men.
Detective Inspector Paul Wilson said at the time: “Our three investigations were all intrinsically linked and brought about the unravelling and eventual downfall of a large scale drugs operation, as well as revealing the attempts to launder criminally gained cash and pervert the course of justice, eventually leading to the imprisonment of 18 men and women.”
Of those in court for the financial hearing on Thursday, ringleader Thenveer Hussain, of Sheffield Road, Tinsley, made a personal profit of £745,816.09 and will have to repay £1,901.09. He was previously jailed for 24 years for nine counts of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, money laundering and attempting to pervert the course of justice.
Liam Kitchen, of Plowright Way, Gleadless, made £460,850 and will have to repay just £935, while his brother Ricky Kitchen, of Callow Drive, Gleadless, made £460,950 and will pay back £1,000. They are both currently serving 10-year prison sentences for conspiracy to supply Class A dugs and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Mohammed Majid, of Stratford Street, Leeds, made £459,915 and will repay a nominal amount of just £1. He is also serving ten years in jail for two counts of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.
Rushpal Aujla, of Stile Road, Huddersfield, made £2,240 and will also have to repay just £1. He is now out of jail having been sentenced to two years for conspiracy to supply Class A drugs
Jonathan McDonald, of Fox Court Drive in Brighouse, West Yorkshire, made £460,415 and will pay back just £500. He is serving a 20-year prison sentence after being jailed for three counts of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.
Mohammed Qureshi, of Pinar Road, London, made £52,000 but will have to repay £16,620 - the value of a BMW registered to him that is to be sold off.
Qureshi was sentenced to three years for conspiracy to launder the proceeds of crime.
Financial proceedings against Stephanie Belk, of Plowright Way, Gleadless, were dropped in the case after the prosecution accepted her role in the gang had involved her making no profit.
Belk has also been released from prison after previously being sentenced to 16 months for conspiracy to supply class A drugs.