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South Wales Police

Swansea man sentenced to 11 years for sexual offences against children

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23-year-old Samuel Morris, from Swansea, appeared before Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court today (21 April) where he was sent to prison for 11 years and has also been given an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.

Morris pleaded guilty to 40 counts of sexual offences against children aged between 11-15yrs old.

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Morris’ offences included inciting children to engage in penetrative activity, inciting sexual activity and numerous offences of sexual communication with a child.

Morris also pleaded guilty to possessing indecent images of children of Category A, B, C, extreme pornography and prohibited images and to the distribution of indecent images of children online.

South Wales Police Online Investigation Team (POLIT) conducted a thorough and complex online investigation which resulted in children being identified within the UK as well as in USA and Australia.

POLIT detectives identified that Morris had been posing as a 16 year-old boy on social media platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat to meet children and establish a relationship.

He encouraged children to send indecent images of themselves which he captured with screen recording equipment and saved to his devices before sharing a number of these with other sex offenders via online forums.

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The investigation resulted in 31 children aged between 11 and 15 years old being identified as victims.

Due to the complex and thorough investigation conducted by South Wales Police Detectives from the Specialist Crime, Police Online Investigation Team led to an early guilty plea and today’s sentence.

Detective Sergeant Lauren Jones, who led the POLIT investigation, said: “As a result of the complex and thorough investigation by detectives from the force’s Specialist Crime Team and POLIT Morris had little choice but to enter his guilty plea to the charges placed before him.

“Our investigation involved the examination of numerous social media platforms accessed by Morris to groom his young victims. We were able to identify and safeguard 31 children from the UK and beyond.

“Working with forensic examiner DC Anthony Kirby and in liaison with police colleagues in Australia and the USA we were able to ensure that all the children who were victims of Morris’ crimes were successfully identified.

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“I want to pay tribute to the bravery of the young victims in this investigation for speaking to police and supporting this prosecution.

“The Police Online Investigation Team is a dedicated unit that specialises in identifying offenders who target children online and commit child sex offences.

“Tackling online child sexual exploitation is a national priority for law enforcement and we are pursuing more offenders and safeguarding more children than ever before.

“I encourage all parents who have children that access social media platforms to monitor your child’s online activity and encourage your child to discuss any incidents that may occur online. Working together, we can ensure that children are aware of the dangers presented online by offenders such as Samuel Morris.’’

(Lead image: South Wales Police)

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Port Talbot

Police launch appeal to find missing disabled woman

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South Wales Police have launched an appeal to find missing Waunarlwydd woman, Kelly Randell.

45 year-old Kelly was last seen in Port Talbot on Tuesday 3 May.

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A wheelchair user with one leg, Kelly is described as being around 5ft of medium build with brown hair which is tied up – possibly in a bun.

She was last seen wearing black jeans and a black coat.

She has links to both Swansea and Port Talbot.

South Wales Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen Kelly, or who has information which will help them to find her, to contact them online or by calling 101 quoting occurrence number 2200149152.

(Lead image: Family photo / South Wales Police)

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Port Talbot

Port Talbot scaffolder jailed for heading-up drug gang

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A Port Talbot scaffolder has been jailed for 12 years for heading up a drugs gang.

Three men, who were part of the organised crime group which sold illegal drugs, were jailed for a total of 23 years after an 18-month long Police investigation.

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Operation Formby is an investigation conducted by South Wales Police Force Intelligence & Organised Crime Unit into the drug trafficking activities of Daniel Baker and his gang.

Daniel Baker, aged 30 from Sandfields, Port Talbot, was the head of the organised crime group involved in trafficking Class A Cocaine and Class B Ketamine throughout the South Wales region, and in the Oxfordshire area of England.

His connections with Oxfordshire were through his legitimate scaffolding employment.

He was arrested at his home address on August 18, 2021, where he was found in possession of a significant quantity of Class B Ketamine, a firearm and in excess of £44,000 cash.

The investigation uncovered that Baker had been supplying Cocaine since at least 2016 and had been using various individuals to collect debts on his behalf, collect and courier the drugs for him, and other individuals to supply both Cocaine and Ketamine on his behalf.

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Baker and his gang were proven to have supplied 1kg of Cocaine between 2015 and 2018 and a further 9kg between May 2021 and August 2021. The 10 kilograms of Cocaine would have had an estimated street value of between £1.1 million and £1.4 million.

The co-defendants convicted in the conspiracy to supply Cocaine with Daniel Baker were Steven Hughes, age 46, from Abercynon and Mark Lapper, age 41, from East Hanney, Oxfordshire.

The three appeared at Swansea Crown Court today (Monday 9 May 2022).

Daniel Baker pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Supply Class A Cocaine, Possession with intent to supply Class B Ketamine and Possession of a s.5 Firearm. Baker was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

Steven Hughes pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Supply Class A Cocaine and Possession of Class B Cannabis. Hughes was sentenced to 8 years in prison.

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Mark Lapper pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Supply Class A Cocaine. Lapper was sentenced to 3 years in prison.

Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) proceedings are now ongoing in relation to these individuals to recover assets realised as a result of their drug trafficking activities.

Detective Inspector Russ Jenkins from the Force Intelligence & Organised Crime Unit said: “Organised Crime Groups such as these have continued to operate within our local communities and have been brazen in their activities and believed they are beyond the reach of law.

“Our investigators have worked tirelessly, and continue to utilise all opportunities available, to investigate these offences and successfully prosecute those involved.

“The continued success of these operations provides reassurance and confidence to the communities of South Wales.”

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(Lead image: South Wales Police)

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Morriston

Port Talbot man named as victim in fatal Cwmrhydyceirw motorcycle crash

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The rider of a motorcycle who died in a road traffic collision close to Morriston Hospital in Cwmrhydyceirw has been named as Syed Asim Ali Shah, 26, from Port Talbot.

The accident took place at around 7.25pm on Tuesday 3 May and involving a white Kawasaki ZX900 and a black Audi A3.

Mr Shah, who was known to family and friends as “Asim” died at the scene of the accident when he was riding his motorcycle.

His friends and family paid tribute to him, describing him as a “truly unique character” and a “gentle giant” who was strong willed and determined.

“He was always happy and cheerful regardless of any situation” his family said in a tribute released by South Wales Police.

“He was an infectious individual, and you’d never forget him after meeting him.

“Asim was the kindest most loving individual anyone would meet, he was caring, funny and the life of the party. He would have a way with people to always make them laugh and smile.

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“He leaves behind his darling partner Ocean and their one-year-old daughter Iyla. Asim loved both so dearly.

“He leaves behind his loving parents Nigar and Qadim Shah and his auntie, Parveen. His amazing brothers Munawar, Afaq, Aamir and Azan, his sister-in-law Fareah and lifelong friend Kawsar Hussain.

“He will be sorely missed by not only his family but his huge loving friendship group and the whole community of Port Talbot Mosque. He will be truly missed, and we pray for strength to get through this horrific time.”

South Wales Police is continuing to appeal appeal for witnesses to the Heol Maes Eglwys collision.

The road was closed for several hours whilst investigation work was carried out.

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Officers want to speak to any witnesses to the collision, anyone who may have dash camera footage of the incident or who witnessed the manner of driving of any of the vehicles prior to the collision.

(Lead image: Family photo / South Wales Police)

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