Gangster Moll, 22, who helped his drug dealer friend use three 16-year-old boys as county line ‘slaves’, AVOIDS jail
A gangster wife who helped her boyfriend start a brawl in which three 16-year-old schoolboys were used as “slaves” for drug trafficking narrowly escaped jail.
Georgia Burns, 22, agreed to repeatedly drive her boyfriend 100 miles from their home in Manchester to Hull, where one of the exploited teenagers was being sheltered in a run-down flat.
During a callous exchange of texts with drug lord Jamie Upton about one of the teens, Burns said, “You can tell this kid lives in a crazy house, he stinks.”
Upton, 25, then replied: “Yes he stinks doesn’t he hahahaha?”
After police monitored the apartment, they broke up the brawl and found Upton in an upstairs toilet attempting to flush drugs down the toilet.
Officers seized £2,295 worth of heroin and crack and £3,162 in cash from the flat.
The three boys, whose names cannot be released, were rescued and taken away from the Manchester area after the police operation, nicknamed Marconi.
They were found to have trafficked drugs for Upton in Oldham and Manchester over a period of up to a year.
Burns had gone to Hull with Upton four times and made two trips with one of the boys.
Today at Bolton Crown Court, Burns, of Failsworth near Oldham and Upton of Newton Heath, Manchester, Manchester admitted to having had concerns about the supply of crack and heroin between March 2020 and March 2021.
She received a two-year suspended sentence and had to do 200 hours of unpaid work.
Upton, who also pleaded guilty to arranging another person’s travel in view of their exploitation under the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and possession of Class A drugs with intent to supply them, was sentenced to nine years and three sentenced to months in prison.
The court heard Dublin-born fitness coach Upton was involved in four different drug lines between Hull and Manchester in 2020 to make “easy money” after moving to mainland Britain.
He is believed to have ‘bought’ the so-called Hugo drug line from another gangster named David before touring the Hull flat.
He messaged his predecessor, saying: “I can make £3,000 a month on this, I’ll literally be able to pay you back in a day,” before telling Burns: “It’s all settled.”
He later booked a hotel room for himself and Burns before moving one of the 16-year-old into the apartment to run the Hugo line.
He then started a second “Snickers” line of drugs in Oldham, run by another 16-year-old boy.
Upton was wheeled around in her car by Burns as he believed narcotics police were “less likely” to mug a female driver.
One of the boys he recruited was in and out of foster care.
He was doing well in school at the time he was drafted into the drug gang, but his performance and attendance rate faltered when he became involved with Upton.
In a text message to Burns, Upton boasted: “I sent the kids out to get a pizza. They get £150 a day, it doesn’t matter what I ask of them. “They’re my boys, I fucking pay ’em to know where their bread is buttered.”
Burns replied, “True, if you pay them, they can’t say no.”
A later message from him to her said: “I don’t care anymore. I smashed the guy up in the parking lot earlier, I’ll get GBH if we get caught.”
Prosecutor Maria Brannan said: “Upton told Burns it was going well and Burns said, ‘I’m glad it’s going well and you’re making money.’ Why don’t you ask David to go to Hull next time ?
But Upton replied: “Fk David he owes me £1300.” I’ll take the f***ing piss.” Burns told him: “I drove my car 600 miles to drive you,” after which he offers £200 to go to drive it again.”
Officers were alerted to the brawl after one of the boys confided in his social worker.
The boy is said to have been “scared” and confessed: “I’m selling his stuff because he owes people money.”
The boy also recounted how an enforcer on behalf of Upton said to him: “You have nine sisters don’t you, which ones should I screw with?”
Upton was released on bail following the raid on the flat but was arrested at his home in March 2021, with officers seizing a .22 Colt rifle, 16 bullets, £10,000 worth of heroin and cocaine and 17 mobile phones.
Burns was later arrested. Both made no comment in the interview. All three boys did not support the charge.
To soften Burns, defense attorney Miss Katherine Pierpoint said: “She now appreciates that what she got herself into was serious and knows that those who help others help ensure these types of surgeries are carried out. She knew Upton had concerns about being stopped, which led to him wanting a woman to drive him as they were less likely to be stopped.
“Although she was never involved with the drugs or involved with any of the other defendants, she drove Upton twice from Hull to Manchester. Although she was actively involved during this period, it was limited to travelling.”
“At the time she had just turned 19 and was not receiving any salary during those months. Only once did she get money for gas. It is clear that she was acting at his request all along.
“She was not acting under duress and should and could have made different decisions, but other messages from her phone put the relationship in a different light.”
“One evening, before they both drove to Hull, Upton asks her to drive him, which she hesitates and refuses, but in response he says, ‘You always drive to go to the tanning bed.’
She said, “It’s not fair, the tanning bed is nearby,” but he sarcastically replied, “Thanks, I really appreciate your help.”
“Then the next day he texted her: ‘There’s something really wrong with you and if I go out if you’re up to something.’ If you don’t see me tonight I’m going to smash your car.”
She says: “Why do you expect me to be kind to you after what happened? You keep threatening me.” He replied, “Get in your car when you get home and come see me, you have an hour.”
“She ended up driving it but sent messages to Upton telling him the whole situation was stressing her out and that what seemed like constant driving was taking its toll on her.
She said, “It’s gotten to a point where I just feel numb.”
On another occasion, Upton sent her three one-on-one messages saying, ‘Get it. Here. Now.”
Miss Pierpoint added: “She met Upton when she was 16 and they dated for several years. Throughout their relationship, he controlled and manipulated her. This wasn’t a girlfriend who liked the excitement of the criminal lifestyle.
“She wasn’t emotionally strong and mature enough at the time. Of course, everything was hidden from her family at the time. It seems that during the time they were together she was under his spell. As of September 2020, she broke off the relationship with him.
“She’s a very different woman than she was then.”
Magistrate Martin Walsh said: “Vulnerable youth or children are often used in the so-called county drug trade because they allow others in the supply chain to distance themselves from end users.”
“They are also easily controlled, manipulated and intimidated.”
“The motivation was a selfish desire to achieve significant financial gain, regardless of the harm done to others.”
The judge told Burns, “You were perfectly aware of Upton’s involvement, but I’m willing to accept that you had an unhealthy relationship with him in which you felt some level of coercive control.” escape prison.”
Kade Joyson, 28, of Crumpsall, Manchester, a friend of Upton’s who temporarily took charge of the drugs line, has been sentenced to eight years and three months in prison. Pedro Begantim, 21, of Ashton-under-Lyne, was given a two-year prison sentence suspended on two years’ probation and 200 hours of unpaid work, while Edvard Volodkovic, 35, was jailed for seven days. All pleaded guilty to drug-related offenses.