Huyton man jailed for 10 years for drugs and firearms offences


A 31-year-old man from Huyton has been jailed as part of Operation Venetic: an international operation targeting criminals who used a mobile encryption service, commonly referred to as Encrochat, in an attempt to evade detection. 

Bradley Hughes, of Huyton, was yesterday (Monday 10 January) jailed for ten years for conspiracy to supply Class A and B drugs and possession of a firearm without a certificate, following a guilty plea.

Hughes used the Encrochat handle ‘two-times’ between April 2020 and July 2020 to supply large quantities of Class A and B drugs across Merseyside. 

He was arrested after police executed a warrant at his home in Huyton on Thursday 15 July 2021 and recovered a firearm and a quantity of Class A drugs. 

Hughes’ sentencing is part of an operation involving European law enforcement agencies working with the NCA, and supported across the UK by police forces and Regional Organised Crime Units. 

The operation came about after law enforcement officials in Europe managed to crack the ‘Encrochat’ service being used by criminals involved in serious and organised crime to carry out their business. 

Detective Inspector Chris Lowe said, “Hughes is one of the latest in a long line of criminals that we’ve put behind bars as part of our ongoing investigation into drug supply in Merseyside.

“Hughes was supplying large amounts of illegal drugs and generating vast profits in doing so. He will now perhaps take time to reflect on the risks he took and the harm he caused, while serving his jail time.

“Our work to track these criminals down and bring down serious and organised criminal groups remain ongoing. To those who we haven’t got to yet, our message is clear … expect the knock at the door. 

“Merseyside Police, along with law enforcement agencies across the world, will leave no stone unturned in our pursuit of those people who think they are above the law, and we will continue to target anyone involved in serious organised crime to keep this positive momentum going.”

Anyone with information on drug dealing is asked to contact @MerPolCC, 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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