Men jailed for 36 years over Rotherham drugs ring

L-R: Daniel Winfrow and Fatjon Xhana
L-R: Daniel Winfrow and Fatjon Xhana

Four men have been jailed for a total of 36 years over a drugs ring operating in Rotherham.

Daniel Winfrow, aged 31, Fatjon Xhana, 30 and Rezart Qose, 35, were involved in a plot to import cocaine into Dinnington in Rotherham.

L-R: Karl Lobue and Rezart Qose

L-R: Karl Lobue and Rezart Qose

Winfrow, of Cramfit Crescent, Dinnington, was jailed for eight years after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

Xhana, of no fixed abode but formerly from Sussex, was jailed for 14 years and Qose, of Arnold Gardens, London, received a six-year jail term after they were both found guilty of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs following a trial.

Their cases were dealt with in July 2016 but the men were only sentenced on Friday, December 22.

A fourth man, Karl Lobue, formerly from Dinnington, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and was jailed for eight years at an earlier hearing.
South Yorkshire Police began investigating the gang in February 2015 as part of a joint inquiry with the Yorkshire and Humber Regional Organised Crime Unit into the supply of cocaine into Dinnington and West Yorkshire.

On June 12, 2015, Qose travelled to Dinnington from London and was seen to exchange bags with Winfrow.

Police believe Winfrow took possession of 1kg of cocaine during the exchange.

Qose was stopped on his return to London and the bag Winfrow placed in Qose’s car was found to contain just over £37,000.

It was established that Lobue had arranged the drug deal in conjunction with Winfrow.

Five days later Winfrow was seen to meet two men in a vehicle, which had travelled from London, just off junction 31 of the M1.

They travelled in convoy to a nearby secluded industrial estate for a short period of time.

Police followed Winfrow and found him with another 1kg of cocaine.

It was established that Xhana had organised the drug deal with Winfrow and that he was also involved in a drug trafficking investigation conducted by West Yorkshire Police, which saw officers recover 3kg of cocaine from an address in Bradford in April last year.

Detective Inspector Graham Bulmer, of South Yorkshire Police, said: “This has been a lengthy and extensive investigation into a sophisticated, large scale operation to supply controlled drugs into the Yorkshire area.
“Working alongside West Yorkshire Police and the Regional Organised Crime Unit, we were able to identify this group as being responsible for arranging to courier a significant amount of cocaine into the Dinnington and wider Yorkshire area in exchange for money.

"By working with other forces we were able to show the true extent of this organised crime group’s criminality who were all involved in the wholesale supply of cocaine of import purity.
“As a result of this inquiry, a large amount of cocaine and cash was taken off the streets and I’m pleased that those responsible are now in prison.

"Hopefully their custodial sentences will act as a deterrent to those engaged in this form of criminality.

"We will continue our investigation to identify how much they have benefited financially from their crime and seek to confiscate their assets utilising legislation under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
“We work relentlessly to tackle organised crime including those who choose to engage in drug supply and distribution.

"Sometimes these complex investigations can take years before we can share the good news with the public. Rest assured though, we do everything we can to identify these people and bring them before the courts for prosecution."

Three other men charged as part of the same police probe were found not guilty.