Detectives are today (Wednesday 25 August) issuing images of nine men who are wanted in connection with drug conspiracy offences, as part of Operation Venetic, the international mobile encryption investigation.
Extensive enquiries are ongoing to trace the following men (pictured below and left to right): 1) 34-year-old Kevin Nolan from Stockbridge Village 2) 26-year-old Anthony Baker-Owens from Birkenhead 3) 30-year-old Callum Hogg from Liverpool
4) 28-year-old Adam Lea from Liverpool 5) 26-year-old Ian Roberts from Huyton 6) 33-year-old Neil Kettle from Huyton
7) 29-year-old Saleh Saleh from Liverpool 8) 38-year-old Shaun Walker from Liverpool (with links to Widnes, Cheshire) 9) 31-year-old Ian Lea from Liverpool
Detective Sergeant Daniel Pilling, part of Merseyside Police's response to Operation Venetic, said: “As part of the international operation, around 60,000 users of encrochat have been identified worldwide, with about 10,000 of them in the UK – all involved in coordinating and planning the supply and distribution of drugs and weapons, money laundering and other criminal activity.
“You will have seen many recent court cases involving this massive operation, with more in the pipeline. So far on Merseyside, we have arrested 148 people, 114 of whom have been charged. 37 people have been sentenced to a total of 444 years in prison, which has a massive impact on the criminal landscape of Merseyside and beyond.
“We’re confident that these nine men will all face the courts sooner or later, so we’d encourage them or anyone who knows their whereabouts to contact us and stop delaying the inevitable. We’ll continue to issue the faces of any more wanted individuals until they are brought in.
“Merseyside and many areas of the UK are safer thanks to this operation, and we will continue to target anyone we suspect is involved in serious organised crime and keep the momentum going.”
Contact us via our social media desk on Twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook ‘Merseyside Police Contact Centre’ or call 101. You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via their online form at: https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/give-information.