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Home ESSEX Officers who brought down an organised crime ring have been praised after five members of the ring were convicted of supplying Class A drugs on the streets of Essex

Officers who brought down an organised crime ring have been praised after five members of the ring were convicted of supplying Class A drugs on the streets of Essex

Three men were sentenced to 18 years in prison, while two other men were convicted and given suspended sentences.

Judge David Turner praised the operation led by officers from our serious and organised crime unit during the group’s sentencing on Tuesday at Chelmsford Crown Court, saying it is “impossible to do justice to the level of detail involved in the investigation.

The group was led by Steven Mann, who was the subject of an investigation after he was suspected of living well above his means and was known to drive a slew of supercars, including a McLaren 600LT worth over £100,000 and a number of Rolls Royces.

Mann ran the organisation from his home on Gershwin Avenue in Witham.
He had a number of high-value assets and a very limited source of legitimate income that could not support his lifestyle.

Officers from our serious and organised crime unit were able to connect Mann to a retail premises in Witham that he owned through the investigation, which included the seizure of cocaine worth up to £24,000.

Drugs seized: 20220615.jpg

Approximately £24,000 in cocaine was seized during the investigation.

It was identified as a location where he and his colleagues would gather to discuss the group’s activities.

Officers were able to connect the 38-year-old who led the organised crime group to James Lucia, Jordan Newell, Dean Newman, and Billy Rice as a result. Each of the men reported to Mann.

Lucia, 36, was Mann’s main runner until their relationship ended, at which point Newell, 28, took over and began carrying out the group’s street level activity.

Dean Newman, 31, worked for Newell, while Rice, 45, was a drug runner who supplied street users under Lucia’s supervision.

Officers were able to piece the group together, and they were apprehended in February 2020.

Mann, 38, of Great Leighs’ Boreham Road, was charged with conspiracy to supply a Class A drug.

James Lucia, 36, of Witham’s Ness Walk, was charged with two counts of conspiracy to supply a Class A drug.

Jordan Newell, 28, of Forest Road, Witham, was charged with conspiracy to supply a Class A drug and possessing a Class A drug with intent to supply.

Dean Newman, 31, of Witham’s Church Street, was charged with being involved in the supply of a Class A drug.

Billy Rice, 45, of Maldon’s Spital Road, was charged with conspiracy to supply a Class A drug.

All admitted the charges against them and were sentenced yesterday, Tuesday 14 June, at Chelmsford Crown Court.

Mann was sentenced to eight years in prison, while Newell was sentenced to five years and three months in prison.

Lucia received a total sentence of four years and six months in prison.

Rice was sentenced to two years in prison, suspended for two years, and ordered to perform 250 hours of unpaid work, while Newman was sentenced to two years in prison, suspended for two years, and ordered to perform 300 hours of unpaid work.

Detective Superintendent Lee Morton of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate’s serious and organised crime unit stated:

This investigation was extremely complex, and it took a great deal of patience from the talented investigative team to secure the charges, particularly against Mann, who did everything he could to sabotage the operation.

Mann sat above each of the men, allowing him to distance himself from the criminality of the group. “However, we were able to prove his significant involvement with a variety of evidence over time.” The judge’s perspective on the investigation is self-evident.
“This group saw nothing wrong with profiting from the sale of drugs to vulnerable people in the county.”
I have no doubt that Essex is now a safer place as a result of our investigators’ efforts to disrupt this group.

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