1. ITV Report

Man jailed for cocaine dealing

Following an investigation by Thames Valley Police’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit, a man has been sentenced to 25 years imprisonment, for his role as one of the heads of an organised crime group who were supplying cocaine on a commercial scale throughout the UK.

Erald Mema, aged 33, who is an Albanian national who resided in the UK since 2003 and lived at addresses within Oxford and Beaconsfield, was found guilty by jury of two count of conspiracy to supply class A drugs, following a trial at Oxford Crown Court and was sentenced to 25 years’ imprisonment at a hearing.

His conviction was part of Operation Stingray which was a significant and lengthy investigation into an Organised Crime Network who were concerned in the commercial supply of high purity cocaine throughout the United Kingdom.This was a complex and significant criminal venture.

The Court was informed that Mema was able to control and run his criminal enterprise from the UK and at times from his homeland, Albania. The organisation was able to source and distribute multi kilo deliveries of cocaine via a series of drugs couriers throughout the Midlands, Oxford and Bracknell areas.

Operation Stingray led to individuals being sentenced to a total of 165 years’ imprisonment which includes Mema’s 25 years jail term.

Detective Chief Inspector, Bruce Riddell who was the senior investigating officer, said: “The conviction and sentencing of Erald Mema is an excellent result not just for Thames Valley Police but for the communities we serve as well.

“The successful conviction would not have been possible without the close partnership working and support of other Forces, which enabled the investigation team to gather and share evidence in order to bring Mema and others in the conspiracy to justice."