Romford thug’s schoolboy error led police to smash ‘007’ drugs gang
� A gang of cocaine dealers who lived a ‘James Bond’ lifestyle on their millions of pounds profit were brought to justice over a �stupid error.
Christopher Leader, 54, of Havering Road, Romford, was pulled over on the M5 by Devon and Cornwall �police on a routine stop �because his BMW 525 was not insured.
But he was “sweating �profusely and shaking”, �according to police.
In the car �officers discovered 11lb of cocaine, worth about �250,000, gift-wrapped with a bow.
The find led to an 18-month investigation by Devon and Cornwall’s �Serious and Organised Crime Group in which �officers �unravelled the drugs ring.
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It is believed Leader, who had three properties in �Havering and Essex, was a courier moving drugs between Essex and Plymouth.
Jim Hinchcliffe, senior �investigating officer, told the Recorder: “This was a schoolboy error on behalf of Leader and ultimately led to us finding the leaders of the gang.”
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Ringleader Timothy Eastgate, 31, from Norfolk, owned a yacht, moored in the Costa Del Sol, called Shaken not Stirred, along with homes and flash cars.
He and Paul Flisher, 38, from Chingford, had mobile phones with numbers ending in 007.
Mr Hinchcliffe added: “They tried to emulate James Bond, but they were forgetting he was the good guy.”
Eastgate was convicted of conspiracy to supply �cocaine and firearm possession at Exeter Crown Court.
Flisher, Leader, James Wright, 28, from Chingford; Shaun Battle, 41, of Devon; and Stephen Proctor, 38, from Plymouth, were convicted of conspiracy to supply cocaine. Dean Birch, 25, from Chingford, admitted conspiracy to supply cocaine. They will be sentenced on June 1.