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Drug dealer caught with £290,000 worth of drugs after student deaths in Newcastle jailed for 14 years

0 Ali Minna 28 was jailed on Audley Road Gosforth

A drug dealer who was caught following the tragic deaths of two students has been jailed for 14 years.

Ali Minna, who played a key role in the drug supply of an estimated £290,000 worth of drugs, has been jailed after pleading guilty to a number of drugs and firearms offences.

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The 28-year-old was arrested on October 1 last year coming out of a home on Audley Road, Gosforth after a targeted investigation was launched following the deaths of two students in Newcastle.

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Newcastle student Jeni Lamour, from Northern Ireland, died in October 2020, just a day after arriving in the city. Just over 24 hours after Jeni’s death, it was reported that Northumbria University student, Nathaniel Pavlovic, had become ill at his digs on Melbourne Street.

The 21-year-old, from Halifax in West Yorkshire, was taken to hospital where he died a short time later.

Officers carried out a search of the property, as well as his home address on Prospect Place, Newcastle where they uncovered £5,000 cash, which was seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

The search at Audley Road uncovered a number of significant items including 4.5 kilos of high purity cocaine, over 3,000 tabs of Dimethoxy-4-chloroamphetamine, a substance similar to LSD and 12.2kg of ketamine- with a total estimated street value of almost £290,000 .

Other items recovered and seized included a double barrel shotgun, a revolver, a quantity of ammunition and an array of paraphernalia associated with large scale drug supply.

Some £290,000 worth of drugs have been seized

Minna was subsequently charged with conspiracy to supply cocaine, possession of a prohibited firearm, possession of a shotgun without a certificate, possession of a firearm whilst a prohibited person and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

He appeared at Newcastle Crown Court on November 1 last year and pleaded guilty to all charges. On Friday, October 28 Minna appeared at Newcastle Crown Court and was sentenced to a total of 14-and-a-half years.

Detective Chief Inspector Marc Michael, one of the leading officers on the investigation, has praised the work of the officers and reaffirmed our commitment to tackling drug supply.

He said: “This has been yet another outstanding piece of police work under the banner of Operation Sentinel which looks to disrupt and shutdown organized crime.

Firearms were seized by officers following a raid

“This investigation has been months of fantastic work from everyone involved and I want to thank the team for their dedicated efforts.

“Hopefully this sends a firm message that work to tackle drug supply in our communities will not stop and we have intelligence coming in everyday helping us target offenders.”

If you have concerns about drug supply in your area, or have information that can help officers, get in touch with the police via the ‘Tell Us Something’ page of the Northumbria Police website.

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