Operation Venetic: Whiston Man jailed for 12 years for drug offences
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A 34-year-old man has become the latest in Merseyside to be jailed as part of Operation Venetic – an international operation targeting criminals who used a mobile encryption service to try to evade detection.
Mathew Badibango, of Manorwood Drive, Whiston, was jailed for twelve years at Liverpool Crown Court today (Monday 16 August) after pleading guilty to being concerned in the supply of Class A and B drugs.
Badibango, used the encrochat handle ‘Bagbangboomboom’ to distribute large quantities of cannabis, cocaine, heroin and amphetamine across Merseyside from his Whiston home.
He was arrested in September last year and later charged.
So far, the ongoing work of Operation Venetic to unmask drug dealers using encrochat devices has seen more than 140 arrests, 110 charged and 34 people being sentenced to a total of 402 years in prison across Merseyside.
Investigations continue to recoup ill-gotten gains under the Proceeds of Crime Act, and so far we have recovered £1.8 million in cash, 110kg of cocaine and heroin, and four firearms with ammunition.
Detective Chief Inspector Matthew Smith said: “Today we have seen another sentencing as part of national Operation Venetic, which came about after law enforcement officials in Europe managed to crack the ‘encrochat’ service being used by criminals involved in serious and organised crime to carry out their business.
“Badibango was supplying large amounts of illegal drugs and generating vast profits in doing so. He will now perhaps take time to reflect on the risks he took and the harm he caused, while serving his jail time.
"Our work to track these criminals down and bring down serious and organised criminal groups remain ongoing. To those who we haven’t got to yet, our message is clear … expect the knock at the door.
“Merseyside Police, along with law enforcement agencies across the world, will leave no stone unturned in our pursuit of those people who think they are above the law, and we will continue to target anyone involved in serious organised crime to keep this positive momentum going.”