A Birmingham crime gang have been jailed of a total of 44 years after smuggling heroin and cocaine into the UK.
Millions of pounds worth narcotics were smuggled in via a series of shipments of poultry from the Netherlands.
The gang headed by Wasim Hussain and Nazrat Hussain were jailed on November 28 at Birmingham Crown Court.
Heroin and cocaine worth around £5 million were seized hidden in chicken shipments, but National Crime Agency investigators identified another 16 importations which they suspected contained drugs.
Following each of the seizures the gang set up a new company to try to cover their tracks.
Nazrat Hussain, set up the shipments who made regular trips to the Netherlands to meet Dutch suppliers.
When they were intercepted the gang switched to using corrupt baggage handlers, who collected three kilos of high-purity cocaine off a flight from Brazil to Heathrow.
As NCA officers watched their moves, the airport workers met Birmingham taxi driver Adnan Ahmed Malik.
Arrests were made and three kilos of cocaine were found inside a rucksack inside the taxi.
The pair moved back to their chicken method, and recruited Mohammed Shabir, a worker at a Birmingham-based meat supplier to help.
In June 2017 another shipment was dispatched from the Netherlands, but the drugs were removed by Dutch police, who were working with the NCA.
When it arrived in Birmingham minus the drugs, the group knew they had been busted.
Wasim Hussain rang his main Dutch criminal contact in panic, telling him: “Throw your phone, throw everything, throw the SIM away.”
Wasim Hussain and Mohammed Shabir were arrested by NCA officers shortly afterwards. Nazrat Hussain was in the Netherlands at the time, but he was arrested by Dutch police and extradited back to the UK.
Nazrat Hussain would later plead guilty to three counts of conspiring to import class A drugs. Brothers Manjinder Singh Thakhar and Davinder Singh Thakhar, along with Mohammed Shabir all pleaded guilty to participating in the activities of an organised crime group.
Following a five-week trial at Birmingham Crown Court, Wasim Hussain was found guilty of conspiring to import a class A drug.
A sixth man, Khaiyam Hussain, was found not guilty of participating in an organised crime group.
Nazrat Hussain was sentenced to 29-and-a-half years in prison, while Wasim Hussain got 14 years and four months.
Mohammed Shabir , Manjinder Singh Thakhar and Davinder Singh Thakhar will be sentenced on January 23, 2020.
Colin Williams, NCA branch operations manager, said: “Throughout the course of this investigation, which has gone on for more than three years, we have systematically dismantled an organised crime group that was involved in the importation and distribution of class A drugs across the West Midlands.
“As well as drugs, the gang also attempted to source firearms, presumably to be used to threaten others in support of their criminality.
“The investigation has uncovered links to criminal networks in London and the Netherlands, and our partnership with the Dutch police was crucial.
“We worked our way through the group until we managed to reach the two men at the very top – Wasim Hussain and Nazrat Hussain.
“As we have shown in this case, the NCA will use the full range of its capabilities to comprehensively target and disrupt those involved in organised criminal activity.
“In total more than 98 years of jail sentences have been handed out, and with these men behind bars communities in the West Midlands and beyond are safer.”