A 28-year-old man from Southall has been jailed for 21 years and six months after police stopped a drugs and firearms operation he was involved in through the Enrochat communications network.
Samuel Black of Dormers Rise in Southall was sentenced to 21 and a half years’ imprisonment at Kingston Crown Court on 9 October 2023 after previously pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, conspiracy to supply cannabis, conspiracy to acquire criminal property, conspiracy to sell or transfer prohibited weapons and possession of criminal property
Between April 2020 and June 2020, Black was involved in the supply of at least two firearms, a .38 Revolver and a semi-automatic Walther PPK, and had access to other firearms and ammunition.
He had also conspired with others to supply more than 14.75 kilograms of cocaine, 60 kilograms of ‘skunk’ cannabis and handled around £2 million in cash.
Specialist officers and staff from Metropolitan Police Intelligence reviewed data and discovered the owner of the ‘SAVAGETOPS’ & ‘EUROSANDPOUNDS’ handles as Samuel Black from February 2022.
Detectives from the Met closed in on Black after European partners accessed an encrypted communications network called Encrochat in 2020 – passing data to them via the National Crime Agency (NCA). When the handle was first passed to the Met by the National Crime Agency it was prioritised due the large amounts of drugs and the supply of firearms.
Officers were able to attribute the handle to Black by thorough careful analysis of images of a living room and bedroom which were sent on the Encrochat. In these images Black was counting large sums of money. Black was known to have stayed in the property in 2020 and when they compared the decoration and the layout of the rooms in 2022, they were identical.
Black’s nickname was ‘crack’ and that is what others called him and how he referred to himself to on the Encrochat network. He regularly talked about playing his PlayStation 4 and his account username was ‘Crack_west6’. He even shared an image of his TV showing this username.
Polive also revealed Black made the mistake of uploading an image of himself on his Encrochat device.
Detective Inspector Driss Hayoukane, from Operation Eternal in the Met’s Specialist Crime team said “Black arranged large-scale drug and gun deals to make as much money as possible, with no thought of the misery and devastation he would cause in communities because of the the violence it inevitably leads to.
“Black traded and bought firearms to protect his organised crime network. This investigation has undoubtedly prevented deadly violence that would have seriously impacted communities.
“He believed using encrypted devices rendered him untouchable, and sought to facilitate the most violent of crimes. However, the Met is unceasing in our efforts to target and dismantle the organised criminal networks which seek to blight our streets. Ironically, the steps taken by Black to conceal his operation sealed his fate, presenting us with the very evidence used to convict him.”