POLICE have released photographs and more details of the Torbay drugs and weapons gang.
The five men pictured were bringing cocaine and dangerous stun guns to deal on the streets of Torbay.
Last week four of the men were jailed for a total of 20 years.
In a statement police say that David Morrison, 40, from St Lukes Road South in Torquay was the Mr Big behind the drugs conspiracy.
He plead guilty on March 15 to three offences: Conspiracy to Supply Class A
drugs; Possession of Criminal Property (£85,980 cash); and, possession of 58
Stun Guns. He has yet to be sentenced. A Proceeds of Crime Act confiscation
timetable has been issued.
Investigating officer DC Mark Parfey explained how Morrison had bought and
sold counterfeit goods and stun guns to raise large sums of cash to buy drugs to
cut and turn into profit.
"The cash from counterfeit goods sales, as well as stun guns helped him to
raise enough cash to buy large quantities of high-purity cocaine from the
"This would then be cut several times and sold on, usually in Torbay,
making more profit and the cycle would continue.
"Morrison created a network of lackeys to do his bidding for him. He was
very careful and distanced himself as much as he could from the illegal
activities that he instigated, going to great lengths to cover his
In one instance Morrison and co-defendant Simon Parker wrapped a bundle of
cash the size of a breeze block in birthday wrapping paper and then stashed it
inside a punchbag in the garage of Parker's parents' home in Paignton. This
£85,980 was later discovered when police executed a warrant at the address.
After forensic testing, the cash was also found to be tainted with drugs.
There were several other key seizures linked to the operation. In an early
strike by officers in June 2011 police stopped a red Audi A4 in Torquay Road
Paignton. In the vehicle were the driver James Polding and another front seat
passenger. The vehicle was searched and found in the boot was a black Holdall
containing 58 stun guns.
Polding, 46 and from Windmill Gardens in Paignton was sentenced separately
As the operation progressed the Operation Austin team made more and more
seizures of stun guns and cocaine from the various member of the gang.
Towards the end of the operation on the 15th of November 2011 police
intercepted a drug deal about to occur in Crewe, Cheshire.
Morrison and Neil Musk from Paignton travelled up to Crewe together to buy
a shipment of cocaine after Morrison had met with his Liverpool contact Robert
Unbeknown to them though the pair had been followed by police who were
monitoring the individuals and their movements between Devon, Cheshire and
Liverpool. Police swooped and arrested Neil Musk, Daley and another person from
Liverpool who were in a car outside Crewe Railway station.
Located inside the car was a brown parcel-taped package of powder confirmed
to be half a kilo of high-quality cocaine. Also recovered from the vehicle was a
large envelope containing £12,500 in cash.
David Morrison was arrested not far from the vehicle, on a train on its way
back from Liverpool towards Birmingham. Not being present at the site of the
deal was his attempt to distance himself from the crime.
On March 15 2013 at Exeter Crown Court David Morrison pleaded guilty to
three offences: Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs; Possession of Criminal
Property (£85,980 cash); and, possession of 58 Stun Guns. A Proceeds of Crime
Act confiscation timetable has been issued. He will be sentenced at a
John Minchinton, 34, from Kings Drive Brixham, pleaded guilty to two offences: Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs and possession of 10 Stun Guns. A
Proceeds of Crime Act confiscation timetable has been issued. He received 10
Robert Daley, 49, from Celebration Drive, Liverpool, pleaded guilty to
Conspiracy to Supply Class A drugs. He was sentenced to two-and-a-half
Simon Parker, 37, from Southfield Avenue Paignton pleaded guilty to 2
offences, Possession of Criminal Property (£85,980 cash) and PWITS Class A
drugs. A Proceeds of Crime Act confiscation timetable has been issued. He was
sentenced to three-and-a-half years.
Neal Musk, 34, from Totnes Road, Paignton, pleaded guilty to Conspiracy
to Supply Class A drugs. He was sentenced to six-and-a-half years.
Charlie Smalealso known as Small, 32, from Sandringham Road, Newton Abbot, pleaded guilty to possession of 58 Stun Guns. He will be sentenced at