South Yorkshire drug dealer Darren Grundy caught with £160k of cocaine in van could lose house in Barnsley

A South Yorkshire drug dealer caught driving a van containing £160,000 worth of cocaine at the height of the pandemic has been jailed.

Friday, 3rd December 2021, 12:00 am
Updated Friday, 3rd December 2021, 12:01 am

Darren Grundy, of Birdwell in Barnsley, was stopped by police during the first Covid lockdown on April 21, 2020, while driving on the A56 Chester Road in Manchester.

Officers found blocks containing approximately two kilos of cocaine, with an estimated street value of £160,000, plus £150,000 in cash hidden in a void in the floor of the vehicle.

Grundy, 50, was charged with possessing class A drugs with intent to supply and money laundering offences.

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Darren Grundy, 50, of Birdwell, Barnsley, has been jailed after police stopped the van in which he was travelling during the first Covid lockdown and discovered £160,000 worth of cocaine plus £150,000 in cash

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He pleaded guilty at Sheffield Crown Court on Wednesday, November 3, and on Thursday, December 3, was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison.

A confiscation hearing will be held in May 2022 for the £150,000 in cash and a house in Barnsley.

The National Crime Agency (NCA) had been investigating Grundy as part of Operation Venetic, during which it monitored messages sent by criminals using the encrypted communications platform Encrochat.

Darren Grundy, 50, of Birdwell, Barnsley, was arrested after police found cocaine worth £160,000 worth of cocaine hidden in the van in which he was travelling at the height of lockdown

It passed intelligence to Greater Manchester Police, enabling officers from the force to intercept the vehicle.

NCA branch commander Martin Clarke said: “Organised crime groups rely on people like Grundy to move their product and money around. He was obviously trusted by his criminal contacts to do this with large amounts of both cash and drugs.

“Fortunately, through swift working with our colleagues at Greater Manchester Police, we were able to seize both, and prevent profits being re-invested in further criminality.”