Drug lord ran operation from jail whereas crime accomplice lived in luxurious | UK | Information

Remi Merriman (proper) was on the centre of the conspiracy (Picture: GMP)

David Mulligan, 32, was serving 17 years when messages have been uncovered between him and Remi Merriman, 35. Over the course of a variety of weeks, Merriman provided ‘wholesale’ quantities of cocaine and heroin to Mulligan, who was working his personal separate medication line from his jail cell utilizing unlawful cell phones.

Following a GMP investigation – Operation Headland – into the provision of sophistication A medicine in Tameside and throughout Higher Manchester, detectives arrested 9 individuals.

Officers searched a variety of houses, the Manchester Night Information experiences. These searches uncovered medication, money and – at Merriman’s property – designer clothes, Rolex watches and excessive calibre bikes.

Minshull Road Crown Court docket beforehand heard officers analysed Merriman’s iPhone 11, and uncovered a variety of incriminating WhatsApp messages.

A ‘snapshot’ of the messages over a seven-week interval revealed that Merriman organised the sale of 1.82 kilos of heroin price between £72,000 and £109,000; and a couple of.33 kilos of cocaine price between £116,000 and £166,000. Quite a few messages between February 2 and March 18 2020 confirmed conversations between Merriman and prospects, wherein orders have been made for ounce offers of cocaine and heroin.

Messages between Merriman and a person referred to as Matthew Lister have been recovered, wherein Merriman equipped massive quantities of sophistication A medicine to Lister and requested him for fee. In different messages, Lister requested for ‘work’ from Merriman and later requested for ‘half a job’, which the courtroom heard, means ‘half a kilo’ of medicine.

Remi Merriman

Remi Merriman (Picture: GMP)

In messages between Merriman and Mulligan, it was made clear that Merriman had paid £34,000 for a kilo of cocaine – and between £13.5,000 and £14,000 for a kilo of heroin, prosecutor Helena Williams mentioned.

Mulligan later provided a less expensive determine of £12,000 for heroin, the messages confirmed. All through their messages, it was clear Merriman was supplying medication to sellers who labored for Mulligan in Openshaw and Ashton-Below-Lyne. A decide later mentioned Merriman was working as a ‘business dealer’.

Merriman would then organize for his ‘trusted lieutenant’ Lewis Carr, 30, to drop off the medication to the sellers, pushed by David Cottrell, additionally 30. Quite a lot of messages have been recovered between Merriman and Carr, together with a message from Carr which concerned a debtors checklist he had despatched to Merriman, asking: “Anybody else I missed?”

Ms Williams mentioned Benjamin Grimes, 32, was a ‘buyer’ who ordered massive quantities of each cocaine and heroin over messages regularly and paid massive funds. When he was later arrested in reference to the conspiracy, officers discovered 10 hashish vegetation at his home.

Andrew Brereton, 56, was mentioned to be an ‘affiliate’ of Mulligan and Nathan Powell, who was jailed for 9 years and eight months in Might for peddling cocaine. Brereton was discovered to be concerned within the provide of medicine and assortment of money.

David Mulligan (left) and Lewis Carr (right)

David Mulligan (left) and Lewis Carr (proper) (Picture: GMP)

Additionally concerned within the trafficking of sophistication A medicine was Jordan Carr, 24, who used his mum’s home on Princess Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, to organise the medication. Jeanette Carr, 55, was ‘conscious’ of what her son was doing, messages later confirmed.

Between February 11 and March 19, Merriman was additionally involved with an inmate in HMP Manchester, and went on to provide him with steroids throughout visits.

“Remi Merriman was the chief of the conspiracy on this case and his life-style means that he profited considerably,” Ms Willaims mentioned. “He was unemployed and was not on state advantages, however in his home was costly décor, clothes, 4 Rolex watches, excessive calibre bikes and £1,300 in money.”

The prosecutor mentioned there was additionally proof throughout the messages that he had entry to an encrypted telephone, or ‘Encrophone’, however this was by no means recovered.

Andrew Brereton (left) and Benjamin Grimes (right)

Andrew Brereton (left) and Benjamin Grimes (proper) (Picture: GMP)

Merriman was mentioned to have 12 earlier convictions for 17 offences, together with producing hashish and conspiracy to commit affray.

Mulligan has earlier convictions for producing hashish and conspiracy to provide heroin. Lewis Carr has earlier convictions for wounding. Brereton has earlier convictions for possession of medicine.

Grimes was mentioned to have 17 earlier convictions for 21 offences together with conspiracy to commit housebreaking.

Cottrell was mentioned to have earlier convictions for theft and possession of a prohibited weapon.

Jordan Carr has earlier convictions for legal injury.

Jeanette Carr and Matthew Lister have been mentioned to haven’t any earlier convictions.

Matthew Lister

Matthew Lister (Picture: GMP)

Mitigating for Merriman, Richard Simons mentioned his consumer is anticipating a big custodial sentence. He mentioned it was one legal enterprise working with one other and recommended the provision was beneath wholesale stage. “He’s a household man with ordinarily optimistic attributes to the neighborhood. He needs to proceed his training as a physiotherapist,” Mr Simons mentioned.

Sentencing, Choose John Potter mentioned: “Those that contain themselves within the trafficking of medicine can anticipate to obtain vital sentences of imprisonment. They may accomplish that as a result of these of you, together with most of you, that concerned your self on this can have brought on very critical hurt in our neighborhood.

“Hurt seemingly brought on to those that ultimately take medication, those that exit and commit illegal acts with a view to acquire medication. Some have remarked that the supply of medicine in our neighborhood is like most cancers, such because the hurt it causes.

“Every of you might have brought on such a most cancers to develop.”

David Cottrell

David Cottrell (Picture: GMP)


  • Remi Merriman, 35, of Cambourne Street, Hattersley, was jailed for 12 years after admitting conspiracy to provide medication; and two counts of conspiracy to convey an article into a jail
  • David Mulligan, 32, of HMP Garth, was jailed for seven-and-a-half years after pleading responsible to conspiracy to provide medication
  • Lewis Carr, 30, of Hart Mill Shut, Mossley, was jailed for six years and eight months after admitting conspiracy to provide medication
  • Andrew Brereton, 56, of Bob Massey Shut, Openshaw, admitted conspiracy to provide medication and was jailed for 5 years and 7 months
  • Matthew Lister, 42, of Monks Lane, Breightmet, Bolton, admitted conspiracy to provide medication; and possession of medicine. He was jailed for 5 years and 7 months
  • Benjamin Grimes, 32, of Corridor Carr Street, Rossendale, admitted conspiracy to provide medication; and producing a managed drug of sophistication B and was jailed for 4 and a half years
  • David Cottrell, 30, of Alexandra Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, admitted helping an offender; and possession of a bladed article and was jailed for 5 years and three months
  • Jordan Carr, 24, of Princess Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, admitted caring within the provide of medicine and was sentenced to 2 years, suspended two years; ordered to finish 200 hours of unpaid work and 15 days of rehabilitation exercise necessities
  • Jeanette Carr, 55, additionally of Princess Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, admitted allowing premises for use within the provide of medicine and was handed a two 12 months neighborhood order, 100 hours unpaid work and 15 days of rehabilitation exercise necessities.

Merriman and Mulligan have been additionally made the topic of Severe Crime Prevention Orders.