Eleven offenders involved in a plot to supply cannabis on a huge scale have been jailed for a combined total of 37 years.
The total value of the conspiracy is estimated to be over £1 million, with offenders operating cannabis farms in Ashford, Canvey Island and Hertfordshire between August 2019 and August 2020.
More than 485 plants were also seized during a complex investigation carried out by the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate. A further half kilo of the harvested drug was also seized, as well as cash in excess of £61,000.
The men were jailed at Maidstone Crown Court on Friday 29 October 2021, and a further offender is due to appear at the same court for an additional hearing on Friday 19 November.
The conspiracy to supply cannabis began to unravel on 8 October 2019, when Kent Police’s Roads Policing Unit stopped a car travelling on the M20 near Maidstone.
The driver of the vehicle was Drilon Dishi, and inside officers found a notepad, which was being used as a ledger.
Details of the criminal operation were obtained from the handwritten notes, with checks on his seized mobile phone providing investigators with further lines of enquiry.
Dishi was taken into custody and admitted the documents were his, but claimed they detailed ‘little jobs’ he had done on a farm in his native Albania.
He denied that the names of several people on the sheet were the identities of co-offenders and claimed that the name ‘Hekri’, referring to Hekuran Perhati, was in fact a name for a metal.
A search of his property also led to £25,560 in criminally gained cash being seized and, despite his protestations of innocence, Dishi was initially charged with being concerned in the production of cannabis.
The ledger seized from Dishi, combined with his mobile phone records, provided detectives with a foundation of raw information which led to the identification of the Perhati brothers – Doris and Hekuran– as suspects.
Detectives were gradually able to build a detailed picture on the wider scale of the offending throughout early 2020, and a significant breakthrough came in June 2020 when a disused warehouse in rural Hertfordshire, was identified.
Detectives were able to evidence that a number of suspects, including Doris, Ylber and Fation Perhati, completed building work to turn the premises into a thriving cannabis factory.
Brooklyn Selita, Adrian Toma, Kejvi Leba and Klevis Prenga also completed work at the site, which was owned by David Toal.
Kent Police officers, working in partnership with the Metropolitan Police, Essex Police, Avon and Somerset Police and Hertfordshire Constabulary carried out a series of morning warrants on 12 August 2020.
Two warrants were carried out in Ashford, with two addresses targeted.
Hekuran Perhati was found to be the only occupant of one of the addresses in which 129 cannabis plants were growing across four rooms.
Dashmir Disha was found inside the other Ashford address, along with a further 121 cannabis plants.
A property on Canvey Island where several suspects had been seen was raided, and cannabis cultivation equipment was found in the garage.
The warehouse in Hertfordshire was also raided, with Toma and Leba found within, along with 236 cannabis plants. The potential yield of that crop alone was deemed to be £297,000.
At an address in Bristol linked to the defendant Brooklyn Selita, 18 vials of cocaine and over £3,000 cash was found.
Most of the other offenders were detained following targeted warrants at their home addresses on the same morning, and over £30,000 in further cash was seized.
The following offenders were found guilty of conspiring to supply cannabis following a trial at Maidstone Crown Court. They were sentenced at the same court on Friday 29 October 2021:
- Fation Perhati, 29, from East London, was jailed for three years and six months.
- Ylber Perhati, 39, from East London, was jailed for five years.
- Klevis Prenga, 32, of no fixed address, was jailed for four years.
- Brooklyn Selita, 19, from Harrow was jailed for five years. He was additionally convicted of possessing cocaine with intent to supply.
- David Toal, 50, from London Colney, Hertfordshire, was jailed for four years.
Olsin Perhati, 21, of no fixed address, was found not guilty of the same offence.
The following offenders admitted conspiring to supply cannabis prior to the trial. They were sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court on the same date:
- Doris Perhati, 25, from Maidstone, was jailed for five years and three months.
- Hekuran Perhati, 34, from Ashford, was jailed for five years and seven months.
The following offenders admitted to the production of cannabis prior to the trial. They were sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court on the same date:
- Ndue Paluca, 30 from Sheerness, was jailed for 10 months.
- Dashmair Disha, 35, of no fixed address, was jailed for 10 months.
- Kejvi Leba, 21, from Watton-at-Stone, was jailed for one year and five months.
- Adrian Toma, 24, of no fixed address, was jailed for one year and seven months.
Drilon Dishi, 37, of no fixed address, has also admitted conspiring to supply cannabis, and will appear at Maidstone Crown Court for a hearing on Friday 19 November.
A huge conspiracy
Detective Constable Danny James, Kent Police’s investigating officer for the case, said: ‘These men were involved in a well organised and co-ordinated plot to produce and supply cannabis on a large scale, estimated to have yielded at least 100kg of the drug worth over £1 million in street value.
‘The offending was meticulous and well planned, but the expertise of our team were able to unravel their pattern of offending, target them, convict them and seize their assets.
‘Our work has doubtlessly caused a huge amount of disruption for a criminal network that is no longer able to operate in our county and others across the south east.’