Two sisters-turned-gangsters who ran a multi-million pound drugs ring from their beauty salon business have been jailed.
Shazia, 43, and Abia Din, 45, operated online beauty product supply business 'Beauty Booth' in Bury as a front for their covert criminal enterprise.
The Dins were farming out heroin, cocaine and amphetamines to contacts in South Yorkshire, through the Wrafter family - Peter, 58, and his daughter Natalie.
Drug addicts and those indebted to dealers across Greater Manchester and Yorkshire were recruited as couriers to carry the drugs and cash across the borders.
Eighteen people have now been jailed for a total of 139.5 years as part of a two-year cross-Pennine operation after drugs worth £3million were seized by police.
Shazia, 43,(left) and Abia Din, 45, (right) operated online beauty product supply business 'Beauty Booth' in Bury as a front for their covert criminal enterprise. The Dins were farming out heroin, cocaine and amphetamines to contacts in South Yorkshire, through the Wrafter family - Peter, 58, and his daughter Natalie
Abia Din, 45, of Bury was sentenced to 18 years and Shazia Din, 43, of Bury was sentenced to 15 years for conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
Shazia Din and Peter Wrafter colluded to form a network using their team of couriers on either side of the Pennines to facilitate the transportation and dissemination of drugs across both regions.
Operation Heart, led by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) Serious and Organised Crime Group as well as South Yorkshire Police, investigated the substantial supply of class A and B drugs between Bury and Doncaster.
The drug bust uncovered £3million worth of class A and B narcotics, £300,000 in cash, a firearm, ammunition, a hydraulic press and an established cross-Pennine cohort that couriered and exchanged substantial amounts of drugs.
After a delay in proceedings due to COVID-19, five men were sentenced on Tuesday and Wednesday (2 and 3 Dec) at Manchester Crown Court for conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
This takes the total number of people sentenced as part of the major operation which began in December 2018 to 18.
Shazia Din and Natalie Wrafter were seen by a surveillance operation exchanging thousands of pounds worth of drug money in the car park of HMP Doncaster. Both have been jailed as part of Operation Heart, led by Greater Manchester Police
Detectives began to rigorously piece together intelligence that led them to make a number of arrests in Greater Manchester and South Yorkshire in the opening months of 2019.
On 24 July 2019 - with Wrafter already convicted and a significant number of accomplices arrested - GMP co-ordinated a final day strike to arrest Shazia, her son Hassan, Abia and the other remaining conspirators.
This included Wrafter's daughter, Natalie Wrafter - who had replaced her father after his arrest and subsequent conviction - who continued to collude with Shazia.
WHO HAS BEEN SENTENCED AS PART OF 'BEAUTY BOOTH' DRUG GANG
The following group were sentenced between July 27 and and July 29 at Manchester Crown Court for conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
- Abia Din, 45, of Bury was sentenced to 18 years.
- Shazia Din, 43, of Bury was sentenced to 15 years.
- Hassan Din, 21, of Bury was jailed for 14 years.
- Natalie Wrafter, 58, Doncaster was jailed for 11 years and three months.
- Adam Hopewell, 32, of Rossington was jailed for nine years and six months.
- Lee Davis, 39, of Prestwich was jailed for nine years.
- Mark Bird, 34, of Doncaster was jailed for seven years.
- Graham Towriss, 28, of Heywood was jailed for six years.
The following five men were sentenced between Dec 1 and Dec 2 at Manchester Crown Court for conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
The following were also convicted for class A drug offences and were sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court.
- Peter Wrafter, 58, of Doncaster, was sentenced on April 3, 2019 to 12 years.
- Alan Forster, 42, Doncaster, was sentenced on May 22, 2019 to three years and six months.
- Lewis Darcy, 21, Drive, New Rossington, was sentenced on May 22, 2019 to five years.
The following were also sentenced.
Prosecutor Andrew Ford earlier told the court that Shazia Din, 42, led the Bury-based crime group alongside her sister Abia Din, 45.
But her relationship with Peter Wrafter, 57, saw the supply and distribution of heroin, cocaine and amphetamines throughout South Yorkshire-based networks.
Wrafter was arrested after he was found with a firearm, ammunition, drugs and cash in his Mercedes van.
Shazia Din then 'promoted' her son, Hassan Din, 21, to be the figurehead of the business, and Natalie Wrafter, 31, took over from her father, the court heard.
Mr Ford: 'Natalie would source class A drugs on a wholesale amount for onward supply in Doncaster.
'Contact was then made with Shazia and the North West, then couriers would be set up sometimes from Manchester and sometimes from Doncaster.
'On December 19, 2018, encrypted devices belonging to Shazia Din and Lewis Yates were engaged in a data session which took place not long after a phone call between Peter Wrafter and Shazia Din.
'On January 3, Yates was seen leaving an address in Doncaster and surveillance officers saw Wrafter pass Yates a cash sum.
'Yates then drove to Cheetham Hill, where he was stopped by officers - he had children in the vehicle and in the passenger seat was a bag containing £10,000 and encrypted mobile phone.
'Four days later Wrafter was arrested in Doncaster in a Mercedes van - a revolver and ammunition as well as cash and phones were recovered.
'At the house he shared with his daughter Natalie, they found it contained 26 kilos of amphetamine, a kilo of heroin and encrypted phones.
'After his arrest there were frantic efforts to contact him from Shazia Din and her son Hassan.'
A month after Peter Wrafter's arrest, Shazia Din and Natalie Wrafter were seen by a surveillance operation exchanging thousands of pounds worth of drug money in the car park of HMP Doncaster, prior to visiting Peter Wrafter, who was an inmate, the court heard.
Natalie Wrafter and drugs 'wholesaler' Adam Hopewell controlled a group of drugs couriers at the Yorkshire end of the operation and Shazia Din also ran her own couriers, police say.
One of those was James Dickson, 61, who moved a kilo of heroin from Crumpsall, north Manchester, to Doncaster in a Ford Fiesta belonging to Alan Forster, 41, on February 5, Mr Ford told the court.
On February 27, Hassan Din was seen handing a 'large holdall' to David Wright, 54, in a back alley in Whitefield.
Wright gave Hassan Din an envelope before driving to Longley Lane in Wythenshawe, south Manchester.
In a second switch the holdall was then given to another courier, Arjan Bedesha, police say.
But officers from Operation Heart, run by GMP and South Yorkshire Police, intercepted Bedesha's hire car in Mere, Cheshire, as he was travelling to London.
Mr Ford said: 'He was stopped by surveillance officers who found the £170,000 cash in his spare wheel compartment.'
In March, police raided a flat on The Rock, in Bury, which was being used by the Din family as a 'safehouse'.
Inside they found £66,000 in cash and a money counting machine, 1kg of cannabis, digital scales, and a vacuum packing machine, the court heard.
This led to a number of couriers and others being caught in the act - including Forster's partner Rachael Turpin, 39.
Prosecutors said Turpin kept in constant contact with Forster and Hopewell during one late night run to South Yorkshire with £50,000 worth of cocaine.
Jonathan Ramsbottom, 36, drove a van containing 1kg of cocaine to the Pennines where he met Melvyn Sheldon, 40, on April 26.
Jailing Ramsbottom, a judge told him to go down to the cells as he banged on the glass dock and fought with four dock officers.
In April 2019, Wright and Sheldon were then spotted on the surveillance officers' dashcam footage speaking through the passenger window of Wright's van, the court was told.
The prosecution said: 'In the passenger seat there was a kilo of cocaine recovered as well as an encrypted phone.
'When he was arrested and cautioned Wright said: 'It was f****** stupid doing this, I wish I didn't take the job'.'
Police then carried out two major raids, the court heard.
In a final strike, police raided Shazia and Hassan Din at their home address on The Drive, Bury, and Abia Din at her home on Woodman Drive, Bury, the court was told.
All were in possession of cash, encrypted mobile phones, and luxury items including Rolex watches and a £60,000 diamond ring.
They also had use of expensive lease cars, including a Mercedes worth £50,000, it was said.
Yates's address in Ashton-under-Lyne was searched and officers found a 30-plant strong cannabis farm in the loft.
Sentencing them, Judge Alan Conrad QC said: 'This was a professional, organised conspiracy network, with carefully chosen workers, some of them yourselves, who were employed ranging from organisers to facilitators to couriers and their assistants, and those who were prepared to warehouse the drugs.
'The main conspiracy was long running and carefully organised, apart from the very large amounts of drugs and cash involved.
'The effects of controlled drugs on the users of addiction, even some amongst you, are ill-health, degradation and sometimes even death - together with the financial pressure causing acquisitive crime to follow.'