Croydon men jailed for 32 years after police find guns and £6,000 in fake cash

Two Croydon men have been jailed for a total of 32 years after police found two handguns, 34 rounds of ammo, drugs, and nearly £6,000 in fake cash. Darren Lewis, 53, of Norbury Avenue, and Alex Findlay, 28, of Knights Hill, were both sentenced at Croydon Crown Court on Thursday (February 9) after a three week trial in May 2022.

The pair were both found guilty of possession of firearms with intent to endanger life and possession of ammunition. At an earlier hearing, Lewis and Findlay pleaded guilty to class A drugs offences, with Findlay also pleading guilty to possession of £5,690 in fake cash.

Lewis was handed 14 years with an extended license period of three years, while Findlay will serve 18 with an license period of four years and Serious Crime Prevention Order (SCPO) for five years after his release. The SCPO will restrict business dealings, work, communication, property and item use, and travel within and out of the UK.

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A third man , of Flempton Road, Hackney, was also sentenced to nine years for firearms and ammunition charges. It came after armed police busted a property on Norbury Avenue in Thornton Heath on January 26 2021. They found two handguns and 34 rounds of ammo in an outbuilding. Lewis, who had keys to the outbuilding, was arrested and charged.

Forensic evidence on the firearms and the newspaper wrappings inside the outbuilding identified the two more suspects who were arrested and charged. Police then cracked a class A drugs conspiracy between Lewis and Findlay which dated back to 2019.

Detective Constable Alex White, the investigating officer, said: “This operation led to the removal of firearms and ammunition from Croydon’s streets and demonstrates the Met’s continued focus on violent crime across London.

“Each firearm seized had the capability of causing fatal injuries and causing devastation to families. Officers from the Specialist Crime Command working in partnership with officers from the local area enables us to identify and pursue those individuals who seek to harm the community.”

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