Gang who flogged £5.6million worth of cocaine jailed for 50 years

Drugs gang who flogged £5.6million worth of cocaine in bricks stamped ‘Prada’ on EncroChat are jailed for 50 years

  • Major drug gang who sold bricks of cocaine stamped ‘Prada’ jailed for 50 years
  • Vikram Virdee, Dean Riley, and Richard Yarker sold 56kg of class A drugs in UK
  • Accomplice Karl McQuillan delivered the drugs and collected cash in locations
  • Gang sold £5.6million of cocaine that was packed into bricks with designer logo
  • West Midlands Organised Crime Unit uncovered operation by EncroChat activity

A major drug gang who sold £5.6million worth of cocaine that was packed into large bricks and stamped with the word ‘Prada’ have been jailed for more than 50 years.

Vikram Virdee, 34, Dean Riley, 55, and Richard Yarker, 49, were the key players in a group that sold 56kg of class A drugs across the UK.   

Their accomplice Karl McQuillan, 29, delivered the drugs and collected cash from around the UK including Worcester, Wales, Gloucestershire and Nottingham.

West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit (ROCUWM) exposed the multi-million pound operation following a UK-wide investigation into EncroChat, led by the National Crime Agency.  

The gang operated partially via the encrypted mobile phone network, which was shut down in June 2020. 

Ringleader Virdee, Riley, Yarker and McQuillan were sentenced at Birmingham Crown Court on Monday after previously pleading guilty to being concerned in the supply of class A. They’ve been jailed for a combined total of more than 50 years. 

A fifth man was also sentenced in August 2020 and jailed for four years and eight months. 

A major drug gang who sold £5.6million worth of cocaine that was packed into large bricks and stamped with the word ‘Prada’ have been jailed for more than 50 years

 West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit (ROCUWM) exposed the multi-million pound operation following a UK-wide investigation into EncroChat, led by the National Crime Agency


Vikram Virdee, 34, (pictured right) Dean Riley and Richard Yarker were the key players in a group that sold 56kg of class A drugs across the UK. Their accomplice Karl McQuillan (left), 29, delivered the drugs and collected cash from around the UK including Worcester, Wales, Gloucestershire and Nottingham

Dean Riley, 55, (left) and Richard Yarker, 49, (right) have both been jailed for being concerned in the supply of cocaine

The gang operated partially via the encrypted mobile phone network, which was shut down in June 2020

Over six kilograms of cocaine, four cars – some with secret compartments – and over 40 Hours of CCTV were seized during the police investigation

Officers carried out raids on properties associated with the gang and seized 6kg of cocaine and four cars containing secret compartments.

The gang were nailed by over 40 Hours of CCTV and images they sent to each other which featured bundles of cash and blocks of cocaine embossed with the brand name ‘Prada’.

They previously admitted being concerned in the supply of a Class A drug between February and October 2020. 

Virdee, of Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire, who co-ordinated the buying and supplying of drugs, was jailed for 17 years.

Riley, of Swadlincote, Derbyshire, who was the gang’s accountant handling cash and distribution, was jailed for nine years and 10 months.

When officers arrested him in the summer of 2020, he had more than £17,000 in cash on him and 2.2kg of cocaine stashed at his home.

Yarker, of Corley Ash, Warwickshire, who was on licence at the time of the offences following a conviction for supplying cocaine in 2012, was jailed for 15 years.

The court heard police found 3kg of cocaine and £25,000 in cash at his home.

Riley and Yarker also both pleaded guilty possession with intent to supply class A and the acquisition, use and possession of criminal property.

The gang were nailed by over 40 Hours of CCTV and images they sent to each other which featured bundles of cash and blocks of cocaine embossed with the brand name ‘Prada’

Ringleader Virdee, Riley, Yarker and McQuillan were sentenced at Birmingham Crown Court on Monday after previously pleading guilty to being concerned in the supply of class A. They’ve been jailed for a combined total of more than 50 years. A fifth man was also sentenced in August 2020 and jailed for four years and eight months

The large bricks of cocaine had the word ‘Prada’ stamped on each one (pictured)

Drug runner McQuillan, of Whoberley in Coventry, was jailed for eight years three months.

A fifth member of the gang, who was recruited by McQuillan to build secret compartments inside a Vauxhall Insignia, was jailed for four years and eight months in 2020.

He was arrested in South Wales in May 2020 for transporting 1kg of cocaine.

Following the sentencing, Detective Chief Inspector Leanne Lowe, said: ‘This was a complex investigation in which we worked through lots of evidence; conversations, images and CCTV footage as well as mobile phone data to piece together what these men were doing and how they were connected to one another.

‘Not only have we disrupted a chain of supply, we have also removed a huge quantity of drugs.’ 

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