Organised crime gang who supplied guns and ammunition to South East jailed

Pictured left to right - Daniel Ngoo, Stephen Donkor, Aaron John Baptiste, Damian Meade, David Michael Heale, George Clark-Chesaites, Malacai Yaxlay
Pictured left to right - Daniel Ngoo, Stephen Donkor, Aaron John Baptiste, Damian Meade, David Michael Heale, George Clark-Chesaites, Malacai Yaxlay

Seven men have been convicted of multiple firearms offences and will serve a combined 60 years in prison.

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Detectives from Scotland Yard’s Flying Squad have smashed an organised crime group supplying guns and ammunition to criminals in the South East.

Seven men are now beginning a combined 60 years in prison after being convicted of multiple firearms offences at Southwark Crown Court.

The Metropolitan police said the operation to investigate the activities of the organised crime group ran for ten weeks with several hundred policing hours spent on surveillance and the arrest of the seven suspects.

Seized weapons
Seized weapons

Specialist officers took part in 12 armed deployments.

The armed operations included dozens of Met armed surveillance officers, with additional support from Essex Police’s Armed Response Units.

Two of the group were found guilty in November last year, after a four-week trial.

Daniel Ngoo, 30, from Newham in east London, was sentenced to 16 years for conspiring to sell prohibited weapons and ammunition.

Converted 9mm handgun
Converted 9mm handgun

Stephen Donkor, 45, from Grays in Essex, was sentenced to 15 years in jail for conspiring to sell prohibited weapons and ammunition.

The five other men pleaded guilty on 3 June 2021 at Southwark Crown Court.

Malacai Yexley, 26, from Basildon, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison after he pleaded guilty to selling a prohibited weapon, a .32 calibre pistol and 18 rounds of matching ammunition.

David Heal, 57, from Southend, was jailed for nine years after also pleading guilty to selling a .32 calibre pistol and 18 rounds of matching ammunition, as well as possessing a prohibited .22 calibre pistol and ammunition.

George Clark-Chesaites, 33, from Basildon, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years imprisonment after selling a prohibited weapon and ammunition.

And 33 year old Aaron John-Baptiste, from Hertfordshire, was sentenced to five years and three months after selling a prohibited handgun.

Converted 9mm handgun
Converted 9mm handgun

The final defendant, Damian Meade, 34, from east London was sentenced to five years and four months.

The court heard how Daniel Ngoo had a leading role in the overall criminal enterprise, dealing in the weapons.

He used Stephen Donkor to source the guns and to agree the prices with customers.

Flying Squad detectives say Donkor was Ngoo’s main lieutenant and facilitator in the day to day running of the operation.

He played a key role in the organisation, acting as a conduit between criminals wishing to buy and sell firearms and ammunition.

Prosecutors said Yexley, Heal and Clarke-Chesaites were part of an Essex based organised crime group.

On 16 February 2021, they played a significant role in the sale of a .32 semi-automatic Webley pistol and ammunition to a buyer in Basildon.

Semi automatic pistol
Semi automatic pistol

On 23 February 2021, Met armed officers intervened and arrested Donkor and Ngoo at an address in Grays in Essex.

Detective Superintendent Simon Morning, from the Met’s Central Specialist Crime Division said:

“This is an excellent example of collaborative working between the Met, Essex Police and the Crown Prosecution Service.

“The convictions and removal of these firearms from circulation shows the continued aim of the Met to protect the public from harm.

“The Met is committed to tackling and reducing violent crime.

“Part of this involves relying on our communities to come forward with any information they have about anyone who may be carrying a weapon."