A vast network of criminal outfits whose exploits ruined lives in Liverpool and beyond have been locked up this year. The extent of their power and the nature of their criminality may have differed but all had one thing in common - their activity caused misery. Some of the gangs jailed in 2018 operated sophisticated drugs and financial plots while others were no more than thugs willing to resort to barely believable levels of violence. Their pursuit of power mean many of them are spending this Christmas - and many more to come - behind bars. THE CUCKOO SMURFS One of the most sophisticated operations that reached the courts this years was that of an international money laundering ring hiding dirty cash for a former Manchester City player turned suspected drug dealer. Ryan McDowell and his associates delivered piles of drugs cash stuffed into suitcases and bin bags to other criminals – who used a technique known as ‘cuckoo smurfing’ to make it disappear. The … [Read more...] about Major gangs busted in 2018: From Cuckoo Smurfs to Klopp-loving fugitive
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The bus heaves through frayed barrios on the edge of Culiacán – the state capital of Sinaloa in western Mexico – on to the open road and mountains of the Sierra Madre Occidental, heading for remote Badiraguato, gateway to the mountain forest terrain they call ‘El Chapo country’. It’s the birthplace of the man standing trial in New York on 5 November: Joaquín Archivaldo Guzmán Loera, reputedly the world’s biggest and richest druglord. In a book about El Chapo – entitled The Last Narco (there’s no chance of that) – Malcolm Beith writes of the curious surprise among fellow passengers at Beith’s presence on the same route a decade ago: “it’s not every day that a white man or any foreigner ride this bus into the hills”. Nowadays, everyone knows exactly why you are there. I have no one to meet – my only contact around here, the journalist Javier Valdez Cárdenas, was slain by the mafia in … [Read more...] about A tale of blood, betrayal and family bonds. How El Chapo came to trial
A Southall youth who murdered a drug dealer who was on his "patch" has been jailed for life. Hassan Mohamed had spotted Balbir Johal, a drug dealer from Slough, dealing drugs from a Ford Focus in Southall on March 19. The court heard that Mohamed and his friend and fellow drug dealer Yaasin Yussuf were at a flat in Kitchener House, Southall, when they received a phone call. Moments later they left the flat and drove through Southall in a white Mercedes when they spotted Balbir's car. The car was being driven by a "close relative" and had "two young women in the back who were also involved in the drug dealing", said Judge Michael Topolski, at the Old Bailey . "Nothing much positive was heard about the victim during the trial. Balbir Johal was a drug dealer," he added. The Mercedes followed Johal's Ford into Marlborough Road, where they pulled up alongside him and witnessed a drug deal. Mohamed, who lived just streets away in Clarence Road, then leapt out of his car to the driver's … [Read more...] about Southall drug dealer who stabbed rival to death jailed for life
PUBLISHED: 09:44 03 October 2018 | UPDATED: 09:44 03 October 2018 Ford Focus looks more dynamic and is the most connected Ford ever with a host of technology available. Picture: Ford Ford Ford celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Ford Focus with a new model that brings new affordable technology and connectivity to the class, says motoring editor Andy Russell. 'Focus' is now spelled out across the tailgate. Picture: FordFord’s Focus, launched 20 years ago to replace the Escort, was an instant hit and the best-driving car in its class. The UK’s best-selling car for nine years until the Fiesta became top dog and now, even though outsold by the Volkswagen Golf, it’s still the car to beat with two million UK sales.Now owners want more safety, connectivity and technology, to fit their lifestyle, and this fourth-generation Focus aims to answer those needs.Looks and imageThe hatchback – estate follows in November, a raised Active crossover in January – has a … [Read more...] about Ford really connects with customers by launching new, hi-tech, class-leading Focus
PRESIDENT Trump has taken to Twitter to lash out against a new book by infamous Watergate journalist Bob Woodward that openly critiques his presidency. Woodward was one of two Washington Post reporters who covered the Watergate scandal and the downfall of President Nixon. But what is the 1972 scandal all about? We explore. What was the Watergate scandal of 1972? The Watergate scandal refers to a break in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington and the subsequent chain of events that led to the spectacular resignation of President Richard Nixon. The scandal began early in the morning of June 17, 1972, when several burglars were arrested in the office of the Democratic National Committee, located in the Watergate complex of buildings in Washington, D.C. The arrests were made at around 2.30am after the group were caught wiretapping phones and stealing documents, and it was later revealed that they were all connected to President Nixon’s re-election campaign. … [Read more...] about What was the Watergate scandal of 1972, why did it cause Richard Nixon’s resignation and how were Woodward and Bernstein involved?