A DRUGS gang involved in supplying crack cocaine on the streets of Nelson are behind bars for a total of almost 11 years.

Burnley Crown Court heard the gang operated and distributed from a terraced house in Railway Street, and were monitored by police during November and December 2012.

Prosecutor David Temkin told the court that the gang had been in touch with 48 ‘known drug users or criminals’ on a mobile phone they were using.

He said they had used a BMW, Audi and VW Golf to deliver the drugs to their customers, with all of the vehicles hired for the purpose.

Police searched the property in Railway Street in December 2012, and found £3,900 worth of cocaine, as well as cutting equipment and disposable gloves to avoid leaving fingerprints behind.

Nadeem Abbas, 21, of Bank Street, Brierfield, was jailed for three years after Judge Simon Newell said he was at an important level within the operation.

He had admitted conspiracy to supply the drug between November and December 2012.

Naeem Akram, 24, of Chapel House Road, Nelson, who provided the ‘safe house’ in the enterprise and Majid Khalid, 23, of Hartley Street, Nelson, who provided the cars, were each sent to prison for 33 months, after pleading guilty to being concerned in the supply of crack cocaine.

Syed Bukhari, 20, of Edge End Avenue, Nelson, was sent to custody for 25 months, after admitting supplying drugs on one occasion.

Passing sentence, Judge Simon Newell told the defendants all of them played a role in significant dealing in crack cocaine in Nelson.

He added: “It's surprising, despite your ages and lack of previous convictions, that this was an enterprise of some sophistication.

"This was not an amateurish enterprise. All of you knew what was going on and you all played some part in what I treat as a significant criminal enterprise.

“It seems there are many positives to your characters. You are all working, or genuinely seeking work, all of you have got family support and you are all young.

“You will have the opportunity to start again and make something of your lives, but for the present there has to be the punishment.”