Birmingham & Black Country

Another member of family-run arms operation jailed

Trudy Bates Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Trudy Bates is the fifth person to be jailed for their role in illegal arms trading.

A fifth person has been jailed for her role in a family-run illegal gun operation.

Trudy Bates, 26, of Birmingham, was found guilty of conspiring to sell ammunition and was sentenced to two years imprisonment on Friday.

Her father Kevin Bates, brother Connor, cousin Nathan and their friend Imran Khan were jailed on 23 March.

Arms found by police have been linked to over 20 crimes, including the murder of Carl Campbell in 2016.

Kevin and Connor Bates were arrested after their home on North Roundhay in Kitts Green was raided and five illegal firearms as well as ammunition were recovered.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Kevin Bates, his son and nephew and friend Imran Khan were convicted at Birmingham Crown Court in March

Makeshift workshops were discovered in the garage and utility room which were being used to shorten shotgun barrels and modify ammunition.

West Midlands Police said between December 2014 and July 2016 large purchases were made by Bates, of Peplow Road, which are believed to have been for equipment to make ammunition for obsolete calibre firearms, vintage weapons for which ammunition is not readily available.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Officers discovered makeshift workshops in Bates' garage and utility space

These would then be supplied to criminal networks, according to the force.

Det Supt Damian Barratt, from the regional organised crime unit, said: "The investigation revealed it was a truly family affair."

Image caption Forensic testing by the National Ballistic Intelligence Service (Nabis) of the tools used linked the Bates' operation to 24 crime scenes

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