A gangland enforcer and debt collector has been jailed for drugs offences after a National Crime Agency investigation.
Peter Cordwell, who has a history of violence, was jailed today for 11 years and six months after admitting being concerned in the supply of cocaine and amphetamine.
Cordwell, 49, and 6ft 4in tall, was known in the criminal world as an enforcer and debt collector for an organised crime group in Essex.
In 1998 he was convicted of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and in 2014 found guilty of battery.
Today (Monday 18 December), Cordwell was jailed at Snaresbrook Crown Court in London over drugs deals he conducted on the encrypted communications platform EncroChat, where he was known as ‘Mightyjedi’.
He was caught as part of the NCA-led Operation Venetic, the UK law enforcement response to the takedown of EncroChat in 2020.
Cordwell lived in a private gated community on Hazel Lane, Ilford, Essex, and had a vast array of specialist security features fitted in his home.
His messages show that between November 2019 and August 2020 he was involved in the supply of multi-kilo amounts of high purity cocaine.
The charges he admitted covered at least 32 kilos of cocaine with a street value of around £2.5m and 90 kilos of amphetamine.
In one of his EncroChat exchanges he told his contact he had to collect £112,000 from a customer for the “last 4 tops” meaning four kilos of cocaine.
In another, he speaks of supplying cocaine at more than 80% purity.
Cordwell was arrested on 9 August 2022.
He was interviewed four times and answered “no comment” to all questions asked.
NCA operations manager Dean Wallbank said: “By dismantling Cordwell’s crime group, we have put an end to the harm it was bringing to UK streets.
“These men were supplying substantial quantities of Class A drugs across Essex, and further afield as far as Cornwall.
“As well as organising drug deals, Cordwell was known as a feared criminal enforcer in Essex.
“The NCA works in the UK and around the world to fight the class A drugs threat and protect the public from its impact.”
Warren Smith, Mustafa Ismail, Matthew Roberts
Two of Cordwell’s organised crime group members were also jailed today.
Warren Smith, 40, of Stanford Rivers Road, Ongar, Essex, operated as‘Skiplorry’ on EncroChat.
He admitted conspiring to import cocaine, and being concerned in the supply of 58 kilos of cocaine and around 200 kilos of cannabis. He was sentenced to 13 years and five months.
Fellow crime group member Mustafa Ismail, 44, of Roycroft Close, Gordon Road, north east London, was sentenced to 14 years and five months.
Ismail operated on EncroChat under two handles, ‘Raggedjade’ and‘Shavenpike’.
He admitted conspiring to import cannabis (272 kilos) and being concerned in the supply of cocaine (27 kilos) and MDMA (25 kilos and 10,000 tablets). He was previously sentenced to 90 months in jail in 2007 for money laundering.
Matthew Roberts, 47, of Mount Carbis Road, Redruth, Cornwall, operated the handle ‘Randomice’, and would drive from Cornwall to collect drugs from Smith in Essex.
Roberts was jailed for nine years in August 2022 when he admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine and possession with intent to supply cannabis.
So far, through the combined work of all UK law enforcement, Operation Venetic has resulted in more than 3,100 arrests, 1,200 offenders convicted, 7,900 years of jail time, more than nine tones of Class A drugs recovered, more than 3,400 rounds of ammunition seized and £81m of criminal cash seized. The work continues.
18 December 2023