Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Essex: Two women jailed for their role in gun-running gang

File picture of guns taken out of circulation by the Metropolitan Police.

File picture of guns taken out of circulation by the Metropolitan Police.

Two women from Harwich are among a gang of seven jailed for running a criminal network supplying guns and ammunition.

shares
Caroline Hunter-Mann-Purdy, 64, of Harwich Road, HarwichCaroline Hunter-Mann-Purdy, 64, of Harwich Road, Harwich

Ringleaders Paul Alexander and Carl Gordon met at HMP Swaleside, Kent, where both were serving life sentences.

Using illegally-held mobile phones smuggled into the prison, Alexander’s knowledge of firearms and Gordon’s links to organised crime, the pair got round the law by arranging people on the outside to legally buy obsolete weapons and then converting them to live guns, making them illegal.

Despite ammunition no longer being made for the weapons Alexander, a former Harwich resident, knew how to produce it and shared his knowledge with members of the gang.

Yesterday (Friday June 6), Alexander, 58, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply firearms with intent to endanger life. He was sentenced to 16 years, to be served after his current prison sentence ends next year.

Lullabell Purdy, 26, of Harwich Road, HarwichLullabell Purdy, 26, of Harwich Road, Harwich

His wife Caroline Hunter-Mann-Purdy, 64, of Harwich Road, near Harwich admitted conspiracy to supply firearms and was sentenced to seven years, while his step-daughter Lullabell Purdy, 26, also of Harwich Road, near Harwich, pleaded guilty to money laundering offences and was sentenced to 300 hours of community service.

Two other gang members admitted conspiracy charges, while a further two were convicted after a trial of conspiracy to supply firearms and money laundering charges.

In total the seven received more than 54 years in prison after the hearing at Woolwich Crown Court.

Gordon, 27, of HMP Belmarsh, is due to be sentenced at a later date.

Paul Alexander, 58, of HMP BelmarshPaul Alexander, 58, of HMP Belmarsh

The convictions came after a Metropolitan Police investigation, Operation Propus, was launched in 2011 when intelligence came to light of the mobile phones.

Det Insp Richard Mills, from the Met Police’s Special Intelligence Section, said: “During the period that Gordon and Alexander met in prison, they effectively became business partners, dealing in deadly weapons and ammunition.

“The firearms and ammunition they converted had the potential to cause great harm on our streets.

“This was a complex investigation by the Met’s Special Intelligence Section, which is committed to targeting criminal networks and bringing a successful prosecution. I would like to pay tribute to the detectives who have worked tirelessly to see this case to its successful conclusion.”

shares
The scene of a fire at Exning Primary School. Headteacher, James Clark.

A primary school has been forced not to open today for the first day of term after a blaze broke out in the early hours of this morning.

Ronald Chisnall

An 89-year-old widower who sexually assaulted two schoolgirls at his Ipswich home has been jailed for 34 months.

The A14

Emergency teams worked to release a man trapped in his car after it overturned on the A14.

Hungarian soldiers put razor wire on top of a fence on the border with Serbia to tackle the refugee crisis. Photo: AP Photo/Darko Bandic

Essex-wide talks should be held on how councils can help with the current refugee crisis, according to the leader of Colchester Borough Council.

Man holds onto a fence outside of a train that was stopped in Bicske, Hungary, Friday, Sept. 4, 2015. Over 150,000 migrants have reached Hungary this year, most coming through the southern border with Serbia. Many apply for asylum but quickly try to leave for richer EU countries. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

Three Suffolk MPs have added their calls for Britain to join other European countries in offering more Syrian refugees a safe haven.

The Woodbridge Heritage Group are campaigning against the proposed relocation of

Campaigners fighting for a statue to remain in the town where it has stood for 35 years have received backing from a relative of its original benefactor.

Fun at the Age UK Suffolk Forget-me-not fish and chip summer day out at Sizewell

‘When they go home with a smile on their face, it’s lovely’. Steven Russell hears about Age UK Suffolk’s Forget-me-not clubs

Drink driver in court

An army driver’s career is hanging in the balance after he was caught driving while nearly three times the alcohol limit.

Dr Fayez Ayache is heartbroken by the escalating problems in his homeland

“Syria should be the most secure place in the middle east, but it’s the most destructive place on earth.”

Aiden Bloss at home in Stradbroke with mum Emma and sister Libby.

Starting high school may be seen as a routine event, but for one Suffolk boy it is an impressive milestone in a life that could have been very different.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages