Islington gunrunners jailed for smuggling Dark Knight machine guns
- Credit: Archant
Pair get 22 years for bringing ‘Matrix’ weapons which ‘kill, maim and terrorise’ into borough
A pair of gunrunners who tried to bring powerful sub machine guns, as featured in the Matrix and Dark Knight movies, into the UK were jailed for more than 22 years today.
Alexander Mullings, whose street name is Smokey, is originally from Islington but was already behind bars when he masterminded a plot to bring in “dangerous” Skorpion weapons, capable of firing 850 rounds a minute, into Finsbury Park.
He and girlfriend Emily Ciantar, 20, of Hillmarton Road, Holloway, used Parcelforce to bring the Czech-made guns into the country.
Three of the guns – described by a senior trident officer as “some of the most dangerous weapons ever seen reach the hands of UK criminals” – were seized last year, but five more packages are known to have been delivered before police smashed the scheme.
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At Luton Crown Court Mullings, 23, was jailed for life by Judge David Farrell QC who said that he must serve a minimum of 10 years before he can apply for parole, while Ciantar, who cried throughout the hearing, faces 12 years behind bars.
The judge said: “I take the view that but for her relationship with Mr Mulling she would not be where she is now. Her role was a key role because Mr Mullings needed someone on the outside to do his bidding.”
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Judge Farrell said; “It beggars belief that someone so easily and quickly could obtain an illegal phone and conduct a criminal enterprise from prison.”
He said Mullings had openly bragged on social media how much money he was making running a drug distribution network and escort agency from his cell.
At his Old Bailey trial last month Mullings and Ciantar, who acted as a courier, were found guilty of conspiring to possess firearms with intent to endanger life.
Co-defendant Spencer Inglis, who took delivery of one of the guns, was found guilty of possessing a prohibited weapon. Inglis was cleared of the conspiracy charge.
The Old Bailey heard Ciantar arrived at Inglis’ home by minicab and handed over the Skorpion and 74 rounds of ammunition just hours before police, who had been watching the house, raided it.
The second machine gun was recovered after it was intercepted in the post.
The package, which also contained two empty magazine clips and 100 rounds of ammunition, was intended to go to an address in Finsbury Park, the court was told.
Police intercepted a third package containing a Skorpion, three magazine clips but no ammunition in June last year at a international postal hub in Coventry.
All the defendants had denied involvement in the plot.
Mullings said he was acting under duress to protect Ciantar from a “Mr X”, who was demanding £20,000 drugs money and threats had been made to put her in a bath of hot oil if she did not pay up.
Ciantar, 20, initially denied being the person in the minicab but subsequently changed her story and claimed she was delivering drugs.
She was identified in photos found on her mobile phone of a person holding a Zoraki handgun by an a tattoo on her wrist.
All the guns were deactivated weapons that the supplier had reactivated.
The plotters are thought to have paid two to three thousand pounds for the guns, but they would have had a street value much higher.
Inglis, 24, from Mitcham, South London was jailed for 7 and a half years.
Judge Farrell told Mullings and Ciantar: “You played a part in a well organised and professional executed criminal enterprise importing semiautomatic pistols and ammunition.
“The gravity of this level of gun crime cannot be exaggerated. Guns kill and maim, terrorise and intimidate. That is why criminals want them and use them.