Glasgow & West Scotland

Drug dealer who headed Glasgow organised crime gang is jailed

Anthony O'Hare Image copyright Spindrift
Image caption Anthony O'Hare was described as the ringleader of the gang

A drug dealer who set up an organised crime gang after being released early from prison has been jailed for eight years.

Anthony O'Hare, 33, was described as a ringleader of a Glasgow gang which planned to flood central Scotland with heroin and cocaine in 2018.

O'Hare was jailed for seven years in 2013 for his role in a £2m drugs and dirty money operation.

The High Court in Glasgow heard he was released in 2017 and returned to crime.

A large-scale police probe led to him being caught again by detectives, who found £40,000 in cash.

Two of O'Hare's associates were also held as police seized £500,000 of heroin and cocaine.

Kidney transplant

Michael Hamilton, 50, and 40-year old William Scott had been following O'Hare's orders.

Hamilton, who was waiting for a kidney transplant when he was arrested, will be sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh in December.

Scott, who became involved because he was in debt to due to his alcohol addiction, was jailed for three years.

Judge Lady Scott told O'Hare: "It is clear from the offences and the evidence you had a leading role in this operation on the ground.

"During this period you were on licence for serious and organised crime."

She told Scott: "You had regular contact with Mr O'Hare and acted under his instructions."

Cash counting machines

O'Hare admitted being concerned in the supply of both drugs, directing others to commit a serious offence as well as having £41,250 of dirty money.

Hamilton admitted the same drug charges while Scott confessed to cocaine supply.

Prosecutor Chris McKenna said hundreds of texts between the men "painted a clear picture" of the large-scale drug operation.

This included details of postcodes and house numbers where consignments were to be delivered to across the country.

The only drugs seized were found in a car outside Hamilton's home in the city's Ruchazie district.

Scott, from the Carntyne area, had been involved in a delivery of cocaine in Glasgow.

O'Hare was held at his home in Stepps, North Lanarkshire.

Police seized £41,000 as well as digital cash counting machines and phones.