Drug dealer jailed for 10-years - Leighton Buzzard

23/11/2012

A roofer from Leighton Buzzard was jailed for 10 years on Friday, 23 November 2012, after police watched him delivering drugs and cash.

Kevin Baggott, who has already served an 11 year sentence for importing drugs in the 1990s, was responsible for supplying 21 kilos and cocaine and 111 kilos of cannabis.

He was also seen handing over £123,000 cash to co-defendant Alan McSharry, St Albans Crown Court heard on Friday.

Michael Speak for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Baggott was "a highly trusted member in the top echelon of a drug gang."

He said the police were watching as Baggott stopped on the A23 in Kent on 03 February and unloaded eight bin bags from his Nissan into a Citroen Berlingo. Both cars drove off and went their separate ways on the M25. The Berlingo driver Nicholas Hewitt was followed to his home in Biggin Hill. The bags were seized and found to contain 450 nine ounce bars of cannabis worth £318,000. Hewitt was jailed for four years at an earlier hearing at Maidstone Crown Court.

The police kept watch on Baggott and on 22 March his Nissan van was seen in the Homebase car park in Tunbridge Wells and went in convoy with a silver Mercedes to a farm at Iver in Bucks. The Mercedes was later stopped near junction three of the M4 and five kilos of cocaine were found with a purity of 73 to 74 per cent. The value was between £200,000 and £300,000, but if cut would be double that amount. The Mercedes driver James Lynch was sentenced to eight years and eight months, again at an earlier hearing.

Police were watching again as Baggott met McSharry in the car park at PC World in Wandsworth Bridge Road in London. He took two packages from his Nissan and put them in McSharry's Ford Cougar. The Cougar was followed and stopped and £123,000 was found in the bags. McSharry was arrested and made no comments in police interviews.

On 26 April Baggott delivered 998 grams of cocaine to a man called David Russell in a Peugeot van near the Polish War Memorial on the A40 in West London. Russell was jailed for three years and eight months. At 79 per cent purity it was worth between £37,000 to £59,000, but if cut to a lower purity would be worth more, said Mr Speak.

Baggott was arrested on 23 May after going to Elmfield Gate, Winslow in Bucks. The police followed him to Swanbourne Road, Stewkley, stopped the car and he was taken to Stevenage police station. 15 blocks of cocaine were recovered, along with £3,500 in cash and a CS gas canister. The cocaine was worth between £600,000 and £900,000 at 65 percent purity. If cut to a lower level of 16.2 per cent it would be worth between £2.4 and £3.6 million. He made no comment in interview.

Baggott, 51, of Baker Street, Leighton Buzzard ,pleaded guilty to six counts: supplying cannabis,  supplying cocaine, possessing cocaine with intent, money laundering, possessing criminal property, and having a CS canister.

Co-defendant Alan McSharry, 55, of St John's Road, Penge, London, pleaded guilty to money laundering.

Sebastian Gardiner, for Baggott said: "If he were a more sophisticated player he would not be the person delivering the drugs. He had been working as a roofer, but his financial situation had suffered, earning only £8,000 in 2011. He had been offered the opportunity to get involved and stupidly took the opportunity."

He said the father of three lived in a council house in Leighton Buzzard and "had no trappings of wealth."

For McSharry, Richard Paton-Phillip said he had never met Baggott until he saw him in the car park. "It was an isolated incident and he did it to earn 200 quid." He said his right leg had been amputated and he was living in council accommodation on benefits.

Jailing Baggott for 10 years and McSharry for three years and four months, Judge Stephen Warner said: "This was a sophisticated, highly organised commercial enterprise on a commercial scale for which, no doubt, very large profits are made."

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