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Gloucestershire Business News

Man who supplied drugs to Gloucester based gang sentenced

The supplier to a Gloucester based drugs gang has been sentenced to eight years and four months in prison following an investigation by the Constabulary's Serious and Organised Crime Unit (SOCU)

Eris Hoti, 33 and of Carlton Drive in London was sentenced at Bristol Crown Court today (Wednesday 13 January) for his involvement in supplying drugs to Gloucester man Andrew Venna who was sentenced alongside 10 other men in 2019.

Hoti, who is originally from Albania but was living in London at the time, was arrested at Luton Airport on 18 August 2020 as he was leaving to return to Albania.

He was found to have £10,000 in cash in his suitcase and was subsequently charged with conspiracy to supply cocaine and the possession of criminal property.

He pleaded guilty to both charges at a previous court appearance in October.

Those involved in the organised crime group which Hoti was supplying drugs to were Andrew Venna and Matthew Cornwall from Gloucester, Granitu Nanushi and Orsid Cela who were both from London, Aaron Baker, Daniel Payne, James Dawkins, Paul Reeves and Ryan Reese from Stroud as well as Leroy Slater and Edward Bell from Gloucester.

They were jailed for a combined total of 69 years in May 2019 following a complex investigation, also ran by the SOCU, which saw the seizure of two kilograms of cocaine and £100,000 in cash with evidence of a further 24kg with an estimated value of £1 million being obtained.

Sentencing Judge HHJ Patrick heard how Hoti organised the movement of cocaine from London to Gloucester via his couriers Nanushi and Cela.

Acting Detective Sergeant Daniel New from the Serious and Organised Crime Unit said: "Eris Hoti was sentenced for his part in an organised criminal group operating from London, during the conspiracy he was able to supply large quantities of cocaine to Andrew Venna and others within Gloucestershire.

"The outstanding dedication and tenacity of investigators from the Serious and Organised Crime Unit, made it possible to identify and arrest Mr Hoti, and bring a successful conclusion to the two year operation.

"This investigation demonstrates our commitment to bring to justice those who inflict the greatest harm on our communities. The prosecution of Eris Hoti reflects Gloucestershire Constabulary's tireless efforts to identify and prosecute these offenders, no matter where in the country they operate from. "

Operation Solero sought to develop intelligence around Serious and Organised Crimes Groups operating in Gloucestershire; to disrupt this activity and to obtain successful prosecutions for offenders linked to the identified criminality.

Anyone who has concerns or intelligence about drug dealing can report this via the following link or https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/contact/af/contact-us/contact-us-to-discuss-something-else/ or anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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