Great Britain

Three men in dock on drugs and gun charges after cops crack phone chat network used by crime lords


THREE men have faced court on drug and gun charges after police cracked a phone chat network used by crime lords.

Cops seized £54million in suspected loot and arrested 746 people here after French officers penetrated the EncroChat system in April.

The National Crime Agency (NCA) found cars, watches, drugs and dozens of guns.

The trio of suspects — a playboy, fitness coach and builder — appeared separately before Westminster JPs on Friday and are the first to be named by UK cops.

Mohammed Sabek, Philemon Ghezzehey and Begin Pupla are alleged to be part of an Albanian-run outfit.

Prosecutors said £35,000 was found at two properties.

Photos obtained by The Sun on Sunday show Ghezzehey, 35, smoking a huge cigar by a pool with fitness trainer Sabek, 33.

The pair — UK nationals of Fulham, West London — and Pupla, 35, of Richmond, Surrey, were remanded in custody. Those using EncroChat — around 10,000 in the UK and 60,000 worldwide — believed it was totally secure.

But texts from the platform released yesterday by the NCA show the fears of the alleged crooks. A user said: “I’m moving my family from UK. NCA getting too smart.”

More than 700 crime bosses nicked after cops crack 'impregnable' phone system used for drug deals, kidnaps and murders

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