A Nottingham man has been jailed after using a vulnerable young person as a drugs mule.
Ryan Vaughn, 45, of Bestwood, was sentenced to three years and seven months in prison at Nottingham Crown Court today (4 August), after pleading guilty to possession with intent to supply class A and B drugs, supplying cannabis and possession of criminal property at an earlier hearing.
The case came to light after a proactive stop of a car led to Vaughn’s arrest and uncovered a criminal lifestyle which saw him arranging for a young person to ferry drugs from Ireland.
Officers stopped a black Astra in Alexandra Street in Sherwood Rise, Nottingham, on 12 April 2018, after intelligence suggested that the car could be linked to drugs.
Searches revealed that Vaughn was carrying nearly £2000 in cash, while a large quantity of cocaine was found in the car along with a smaller amount of cannabis.
Vaughn’s phone was examined by a Nottinghamshire Police expert as part of the case, uncovering a raft of messages which revealed that Vaughn had arranged for a young person to travel to Ireland and bring back a large quantity of cocaine.
Sergeant Tom Andrews of Nottinghamshire Police said: “This case saw some real dogged investigative work by officers on the Knife Crime Team, and the force’s drugs experts, leading to Vaughn being jailed.
“This is a man who was clearly not averse to exploiting someone vulnerable in an to attempt to avoid prosecution himself. It was clear from the messages that a young person had been chosen specifically to avoid suspicion at Customs.
“This evidence left Vaughn with no choice but to plead guilty. I’d really like to highlight the tenacity of the drugs expert, PC John Holloway, who revisited Vaughn’s phone and uncovered the messages which made such a difference to this case.
“This sentencing sees a man who put profits above the welfare of a vulnerable young person in jail, where he belongs.”