Forensics ‘found prints of accused on heroin bags’
FINGERPRINTS belonging to one of the accused in the Lothians’ biggest ever drugs bust were found on bags containing heroin, a court has heard.
Forensic experts told the High Court in Edinburgh yesterday that prints belonging to Kris Brown, 29, were found on bags from a house in Sighthill where a police raid recovered heroin worth up to £1.7 million.
The court was also shown text messages between Brown and co-accused Lee Knott where the pair referred to “mixing” instructions and cash being owed to other people.
The jury previously heard that the house raided by police was being used as a “chopping shop” where heroin was cut with other agents, such as paracetamol, ready for sale to other dealers.
Knott, 23, of Calder Gardens, Kris Brown, of Chesser Crescent, and Iain Hunter, 22, of Sighthill Green, each deny charges of drug dealing.
Caroline Stewart, 26, a mark enhancement officer based at Fettes police HQ, told the court that she identified a number of fingerprints on plastic bags and packaging removed from the house in Sighthill View using fluorescent lights and dyes.
Mark McLoughlin, 53, a fingerprint officer with the Scottish Police Services Authority, gave evidence that the fingerprints yielded a match with the accused, Kris Brown. He added that a number of other unidentified prints were on the bags.
Derek Morris, 63, a technical support officer with Lothian and Borders Police, told the court that he downloaded text messages on to a computer from mobile phones belonging to Brown and Knott, which were seized during the operation.
The messages stored on the phones ran from December 3, 2010 to December 15, the day before the address was raided by police.
In one message on December 3, the court heard, Brown sent a text to Knott which read: “We need to know how the decks are getting mixed so can u make a phone call and let me know.”
In another text two days later, Knott wrote: “Don’t mix it yet they don’t know what they wanna do yet.”
Over the next few days, the men exchanged texts about various plans for them meet up in the early morning.
On December 10, Brown sent a text which read: “What will I say to David mate?”, to which Knott replied: “We got enough to give him 50. I’ll give you it tomrw or later.”
The court heard that the drugs found were lined up in dozens of bags in kitchen cupboards next to packs of biscuits.
A hydraulic press was found to compress the heroin into blocks, while cutting agents used to “bulk out” the drug and boost profits were discovered hidden in the attic.
The court heard that 17.2kg of heroin had been recovered.
Knott, Brown and Hunter are accused of being concerned in the supply of heroin and cocaine between August 26 and December 16, 2010. They are also charged with being concerned in the supply of ecstasy, mephedrone and cannabis.
Knott and Brown are also charged with being in possession of cocaine.
The trial continues.
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