England Lioness sobs as she’s jailed for £1million drug gang op

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An ex professional footballer mum wailed "I can't believe it" as she was jailed for her part in a massive weed selling operation in which she acted as the accountant.

Faye Dunn played international football for England U19s and turned out for Tranmere Rovers and Leeds United during her pro career.

But when her businesses in and around Liverpool began to falter during Covid lockdowns, she turned to a life of crime.

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Faye Dunn was nicked at Manchester Airport on June 13 during an investigation into the EncroChat messaging network dubbed Operation Venetic.

Liverpool Crown Court heard yesterday, Tuesday September 6, that the 38-year-old ran the operation with her dad, Michael Dunn.

The mum-of-two was described as an "accountant for an organised criminal enterprise", while she had smuggled ill-gotten cash abroad.

Nicola Daley, prosecuting, said: "She played an operational role within the drugs supply chain but appeared to have significant influence upon others in the chain, facilitating meetings between criminal associates in relation to the supply of controlled drugs, and also instructed others to undertake tasks such as the collection and movement of packages of both drugs and cash."

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One balance sheet from the accountant showed that an expenditure totalling approximately £431,700 was forked out. This sum included a £100,000 house, £25,000 on cars, a £21,500 watch and items of designer clothing worth £1,360.11.

One day, Dunn bought an £11,200 watch through a business account. On April 2, 2020 she sent a colleague called "LedZeppelin" an "image of what appeared to be a tick list or accounting record" showing a total income of £1,155,548 – plus additional funds generated in Spain.

In total, Faye Dunn is estimated to have been involved in the supply of at least 24kg of cannabis and was said to have "played a leading role within the criminal organisation". She also laundered £654,800 of dirty money from December 2019 onwards.

Meanwhile, her dad Michael Dunn was described as having a "significant" role.

Faye Dunn was arrested at Manchester Airport on June 13 and Michael Dunn was held on July 11.

Both defendants, of Whiston, Merseyside admitted conspiracy to supply cannabis and money laundering.

Faye Dunn, who cried in the dock with her head in her hands at various points during the hearing, was jailed for three years and nine months.

She began wailing as she was taken down the cells and said: "I can't believe it."

Dunn is the former director of a number of Merseyside businesses including a restaurant and a popular children's play centre.

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