Mother ran a cocaine hotline for gangster boyfriend
Stay-at-home mother, 27, who ran a cocaine hotline dubbed the ‘Snickers Line’ for her gangster boyfriend while she looked after their three children is jailed for three years
- Katie Baldwin ran a drug hotline for boyfriend Adheel Ashgar after he went to jail
- The mother arranged for junkies to buy heroin and cocaine from street dealers
- The 27-year-old would take the calls from her Cheetham Hill, Manchester, home
- Baldwin was charged in February and now has been jailed for three years
A stay-at-home mother who ran a drugs hotline for her gangster boyfriend while she looked after their three children wept as she was jailed for three years.
Katie Baldwin, 27, fielded calls at home from addicts wanting to buy cocaine and heroin after Adheel Ashgar, 29, was sent to jail.
During the calls, the mother-of-three would take details and then arrange a rendezvous so junkies could buy the drugs from street dealers.
Baldwin was charged in February after a string of raids after an undercover detective bought drugs using her so-called ‘Snickers Line.’
Katie Baldwin, 27, (left) fielded calls from her home in Cheetham Hill, Manchester, from addicts wanting to buy cocaine after her boyfriend Adheel Ashgar, 29, (right) was sent to jail
During the calls, the mother-of-three (pictured) would take details and then arrange a rendezvous so junkies could buy the drugs from street dealers
Police searched her family home in Cheetham Hill, Manchester and found £2,061 in cash.
Officers also took pictures of the raids with a total of 11 suspects held following an operation named Danube.
She has since started working as a receptionist at a jail where she has been held since her arrest.
Manchester Crown Court heard the crackdown began after unofficial ‘no-go’ areas began to spring up in Cheetham Hill due to the drugs gangs operating in the inner city district.
Prosecutor, Mark Kellet said: ‘There are a lot of established organised crime gangs supplying class A drugs in Cheetham Hill and concern has been raised by the public about health and social issues as a number of disregarded drug paraphernalia was found in the community.
‘Young people are being encouraged to get involved in street dealing and young people are increasingly carrying guns whilst dealing.
‘There has been an increase in gang fighting and an increase in gangs using firearms in the area. Because of this, there have been ”no go” areas introduced into the local community.’
Pictured: Baldwin being arrested during a string of raids after an undercover detective bought drugs using her so-called ‘Snickers Line’
Officers also took pictures of the raids with a total of 11 suspects held following an operation named Danube. Baldwin was charged in February
Mr Kellet said: ‘Undercover officers facilitated contact with these gangs by the purchasing of class A drugs and in this offence, the officer is known as J and he became involved in the investigation between May and August 2017.
‘J was used in the Cheetham Hill area to obtain information relating to the sale of drugs. There were also non convert operations that were undertaken to discover their intelligence.
‘Katie Baldwin was running the ”snickers” line, and redirecting customers to street dealers.
‘She was in a long term partnership with her boyfriend and they were lived together in Cheetham Hill, and had three children together aged 4, 8 and 10.
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‘Both Baldwin and Asgar were involved in drug dealing. On May 25 last year, one of the street dealers was speaking with the undercover officer. He was enquiring about who else supplied in the area.
‘The business leader was due to be released from prison in the near future, and someone else was involved.
‘J called the number provided to him on 19 occasions. J called the snickers line on each occasion and spoke to a female, who was this defendant.
‘Following the release of her partner, J contacted the snickers line on a further 13 occasions and spoke to a male.’
During the calls, the mother-of-three would take details and then arrange a rendezvous so junkies could buy the drugs from street dealers
Baldwin’s boyfriend Asgar (pictured together) was jailed for five years at an earlier hearing after he pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of drugs
Mr Kellet continued: ‘He was redirected to a location where street dealers supplied him the class A drugs. They used code names for the drugs, such as Brandy.
‘On some occasions, Baldwin would supply the drugs to the dealers in person either by car or by bike. She played a leading role, separate to her partner.’
Baldwin admitted being concerned in the supply of class A drugs and possession of criminal property.
Asgar who is being held at Berwyn jail near Wrexham, North Wales, was jailed for five years at an earlier hearing after he pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of drugs.
In mitigation, Baldwin’s lawyer Jane Dagnall said: ‘She played more of a significant role rather than a leading one. She was in a domestic relationship and had three boys out of it. She is now aware of the danger she put those boys in.
‘This time in custody has made her realise how she’s let them down.
‘She wants to build a better life with them and once she comes out of custody, if they can forgive her, she can be able to do this.
‘It breaks her heart that the boys will be asking for their mummy – and she will miss out on birthdays and Christmases.
‘This will have the most serious impact on others – the risk was there at the time the offences were committed but she did not realise this.’
Baldwin’s lawyer Jane Dagnall said: ‘She played more of a significant role rather than a leading one. She was in a domestic relationship and had three boys out of it. She is now aware of the danger she put those boys in’
Sentencing Judge Patrick Field QC told Baldwin: ‘You were essentially a call handler and courier but your role was more of a managerial role whilst the boss was away’
Ms Dagnall added: ‘She is genuinely remorseful for the position she has presented to herself and others. She has worked whilst she has been in custody and she has a responsible job as a receptionist.’
Sentencing Judge Patrick Field QC told Baldwin: ‘You were essentially a call handler and courier but your role was more of a managerial role whilst the boss was away.
‘The drug dealing business in Cheetham Hill is utterly corrosive and you knowingly added to that whilst your children were living in the area.
‘The presence of your children whilst you were working on this business was particular significant.
‘You now have regret over the children’s safety as you were dealing in class A drugs but frankly it was wicked and uncaring for to you be involved in this when you should have been looking after them.
‘As a result you were wrongdoing whilst around the children you love and they will never fully understand the reason why. This offence is so serious that only a custodial sentence will be appropriate.’
At the time of the raids Ch Insp Paul Walker of Greater Manchester Police said: ‘Months of hard work have gone into this morning’s action, which was part of our ongoing investigation into tackling organised crime across Greater Manchester.
‘I’d like to thank the public for their help in sharing intelligence. With this vital information, we’ve been able to work with partner agencies and ensure that people who supply drugs are brought to justice.’
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