A drug dealer on the run from a shooting spent six weeks undercover as a UBER driver.
Yusuf Meah, 27, disappeared in May last year after a gun was fired in the stairwell of his flat at Ashton Old Road, Openshaw .
Investigating police turned up at the property after he fled, and found cash and drugs belonging to him inside.
Yusuf’s brother, Ibrahim Meah, then rented a private hire vehicle, telling the owner he would be using it on taxi app Uber.
But, instead of using it to pick up fares, Ibrahim Meah gave the vehicle to his brother to use as a getaway car. With the taxi as cover, wanted Yusuf Meah was able to travel about for weeks without police catching up with him.
However, after six weeks at large and a public appeal for information, police tracked Yusuf Meah down to a flat in Salford. Now he and his brother Ibrahim have both been locked up.
Yusuf Meah, 27, admitted possessing an imitation firearm, failing to surrender, and charges of possessing MDMA and cannabis with intent to supply. He was jailed for six years.
Using the taxi as cover, wanted Yusuf Meah was able to travel about for weeks without police catching up with him
Ibrahim Meah, 30, of Burnage, later admitted assisting an offender and has now been sentenced to 16 months in prison. He told police following his arrest that he had believed his brother was in danger, and had put pressure on him to find him a car.
At Ibrahim Meah’s Manchester Crown Court sentencing, his barrister, Vincent Dean, said: “He was certainly not at any stage thinking that he was allowing his brother to transport firearms about the place. He has reached 30 without having any criminal convictions, and the knowledge within the family that his younger brother was engaged in drugs led to an isolation for two years, but very foolishly, when asked for assistance, he helped him obtain the motor vehicle.
“Certainly he accepts he had knowledge of the general situation, knew his brother to be involved in drugs and in trouble, but as to the niceties, the relationship was insufficient for that degree of knowledge.”
Sentencing, Judge Hilary Manley told Ibrahim Meah: “Assisting an offender is an offence which strikes at the very heart of the criminal justice system. You hired a vehicle for the use of your brother knowing full well he was on the run – you provided valuable assistance to him, he had access to a vehicle and was able to evade capture for six weeks.”