County lines gang who transported drugs between Huddersfield and Blackpool and rapped about it in YouTube videos are jailed for 80 years

A gang convicted following a YouTube video in which they rap about drugs, money and violence has been jailed for nearly 80 years.

The Huddersfield-based gang exploited children to run drugs to Blackpool, though a method commonly-known as county lines dealing.

Some 16 members of the gang have now been jailed over different sentencing hearings after a court was shown a rap music video on YouTube in which the members used gang hand symbols and glorified criminality.

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It followed a major joint investigation by police in Blackpool and Kirklees, where most of the convicted members are from, which was named Operation Ullswater and launched in 2018 to crack down on the so-called "SJ" line, headed by drug dealer Ryan Ncube, 21, from Huddersfield.

(Clockwise from top left) Lee Lilliman, Levontay Harriot, Louis Amnerville, Ryan Ncube, Sanchez Njie, Sharna Boaler, Stephen Hodson, Tyrece Cadwell

Ncube, of Scott Vale, Huddersfield, was jailed for seven years and six months for conspiracy to supply class A drugs - namely heroin and crack cocaine - and arranging travel of another person with a view to exploitation.

Also jailed were Tyrece Cadwell, 21, of Chestnut Street, for four years, 6 months in a young offenders' institute for the same charges, and Levontay Harriot, of Deighton Road, who can be named after turning 18 on June 25. Harriot was sentenced to two years and six months in a young offenders' institute.

Three other members, namely Helen Kenyon, 34, Adam Percival, 32, and 35-year-old Suzanne Matthews, all from Blackpool, have also been convicted and were given non-custodial sentences.

Preston Crown Court heard how the "SJ" line operated through a burner phone line advertising the sale of drugs between Huddersfield and Blackpool, using children as "runners" carrying the drugs and cash using cars or public transport to travel between the towns.

(Clockwise from top left) Adam Saunders, Jordan Gill Smith, Craig Davidson, Dakari Brown, David Sharples, Jordan Cogan, Connor Langford, Kaydee Cogan

A series of dawn raids were carried out by both West Yorkshire and Lancashire Police forces last year, leading to 19 people being charged in May 2019.

Detectives said the gang's exploitation of children placed them at "significant risk of serious violence", adding they would not be making "anymore YouTube videos" while in prison.

Detective Chief Inspector Rebecca Smith, of Blackpool Police, said: “Those who involve themselves in county lines criminality are not just responsible for the supply of class A drugs across the UK, they are exploiting vulnerable children and adults.

"In some cases, as with Operation Ullswater, making them travel hundreds of miles away from home in order to act as runners for the organised crime groups, placing them at significant risk of serious violence.

19 members of the Huddersfield-based OCG gang were convicted and sentenced at separate hearings. Picture: Getty

“Today’s result concludes a complex investigation with a lot of hard work by both the investigation team and the CPS. Without this dedication and expertise we would not have been able to secure these sentences today, which should send out a clear message that we will not tolerate county lines exploitation in Lancashire.

"This gang will certainly not be making any more YouTube videos while they are serving their sentences in prison."

The full sentences are as follows:

Ryan Ncube, 21, of Scott Vale, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2 – Heroin and Crack Cocaine and arrange or facilitate travel of another person with a view to exploitation. Sentenced to 7 and a half years.

The gang exploited children into running drugs and cash between Huddersfield and Blackpool

Tyrece Cadwell, 21, of Chestnut Street, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2- Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to four years, 6 months in a young offenders institute.

Levontay Harriot, 25/06/02 of Deighton Road, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2- Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 2 years, 6 months in a young offenders institute.

Sanchez Njie, 20, of Brander Road, Leeds was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2- Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to five years 6 months.

Jordan Gill – Smith, 22, of Lower Grange, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to four and a half years.

Craig Davidson, 38, of Thomas Street, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 6 years 3 months.

Kaydee Cogan, 23 of Trafalgar Close, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 4 years, 6 months.

Sharna Boaler, 24, of Harrison Street, Blackpool was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 4 years.

Lee Lilliman, 24, of Harrison Street, Blackpool was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 3 years, 6 months.

Dakari Brown, 19 of Bulay Road, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2 – Heroin and Crack Cocaine and Possess a controlled drug with intent to supply Heroin. Sentenced to 5 years, six months in a young offenders institute.

Louis Annerville, 20 of Keldregate, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2 – Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to three years, six months in a young offenders institute.

Jordan Cogan, 24, of Trafalgar Close, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2 – Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 3 years, 6 months.

Connor Langford, 21, of Birklands Road, Huddersfield was convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2 – Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 5 years.

Sentenced in February:

David Sharples, 32, of Grasmere Road, Blackpool. Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 4 years. Convicted of possessing Heroin with intent to supply and possessing Crack Cocaine with intent to supply. Sentenced to 18 months consecutive.

Stephen Hodson, 46, of Reads Avenue, Blackpool. Convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 6 years, 6 months.

Adam Saunders, 46, of Grasmere Road, Blackpool. Convicted of Possessing Heroin and Crack Cocaine with intent to supply. Imprisonment 20 months. Convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Sentenced to 2 years 3 months.

Helen Kenyon, 34, of Grasmere Road, Blackpool. Convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Community order 2 years.

Adam Percival, 32, of Condor Grove, Blackpool. Convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Suspended imprisonment – 21 months.

Suzanne Matthews, 35, of Condor Grove, Blackpool. Convicted of Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs x 2, Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Suspended imprisonment – 2 years.