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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Abigail Nicholson

Shady siblings jailed for becoming partners in crime

From killers to drug dealers, these criminal siblings kept their illegal exploits in the family and ended up behind bars.

Some siblings can be very similar to each other, some are polar opposites while others become partners in crime together. Often siblings have a deluded sense of loyalty which they are willing to break the law for.

We have covered a number of cases over the last few years which have seen siblings jailed together for similar, or even the same crimes.

READ MORE: Three Merseyside schools rated ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted inspectors

In some instances they are equally culpable while in others one has evidently been led astray by the other. Read through our roundup below and make up your own mind as to how these brothers and sisters ended up being sent down at the same time.

Todd and Ben Brown

Todd Brown was identified as the head of a gang that shifted cocaine and heroin into North Wales from upstream suppliers in Liverpool. His 32-year-old brother Ben Brown delivered the drugs to Gwenfro in Caia Park and would also collect payments.

The Brown brothers played major roles in a plot which was described as one of the biggest drugs supply conspiracies North Wales Police had ever seen. Earlier this year, they - along with other members of the 18-strong gang - were collectively jailed for around 130 years.

The gang is said to have sold around £750,000 worth of heroin and crack from their two Caia Park bases to drug users across the county during the height of the Covid-19 lockdown period.


Jay and Joseph Byrne

Jay Byrne admitted the manslaughter of Christopher Molloy (Merseyside Police)

The brothers admitted the manslaughter of Christopher Molloy, who died in hospital a week after being attacked near to Bootle Strand. A 15-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was unanimously found guilty of murder.

A jury at Liverpool Crown Court cleared them of murder. An initial altercation between the parties erupted near to Burger King at around 12.45am on July 12 last year after Mr Molloy was accused of "touching" the teenage defendant's girlfriend.

Jay Byrne - of Leyland Road in Southport - was said to have either punched or pushed the stranger, who then fled to the McDonald's opposite and sought assistance from staff "because he was concerned as to what was happening, trying to get help". The victim remained in the doorway of the fast food branch for several minutes before walking away, at which point he was chased by 25-year-old Joseph Byrne - of Linacre Road in Litherland - and the then 14-year-old.

Joseph Byrne admitted the manslaughter of Christopher Molloy (Merseyside Police)

A second confrontation near to the junction of Stanley Road and Strand Road was captured on CCTV footage which was played to the court. It showed the younger Byrne "landing an extremely forceful punch" with his right hand, knocking Mr Molloy to the floor.

He fell backwards and "cracked his head on the pavement", rendering him unconscious. The juvenile was then seen repeatedly slapping him in the face, a total of eight times, as he lay helpless on the floor.

Both attackers walked away in the direction of the Natwest bank, being caught on camera fist bumping as they did so. The boy returned shortly afterwards alongside 26-year-old Jay Byrne, who kicked a still unconscious Mr Molloy to the head.

The youth then delivered a second kick to the head, described as a "particularly ferocious kick, like kicking a football hard". All three men will be sentenced on March 16.

Jack and Michael Williams

Jack Williams, 24, was sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court (Merseyside Police)

Jack Williams, 24, and Michael Williams, 34, told a schoolboy in St Helens they had a shotgun so they could steal his bike. Jack Williams was on foot and Michael Williams was on a scooter.

The younger brother said to his brother: "Can I have that? Can't be a**** running anymore". One of the defendants shouted and they caught up with the victim.

The bike was grabbed from the schoolboy and he was made to feel threatened. Jack Williams claimed the bike had been stolen from his nephew and the brothers wanted to take it back.

Michael Williams, 34, was sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court (Merseyside Police)

Michael Williams told the boy they "had a shotty", referring to a shotgun. Jack Williams managed to pull the bike free.

They then searched the boy and wanted to take his phone from him, but he told them it had pictures of his dead dad on it. This was not true, but it meant the brothers left without taking his phone.

Judge Jones jailed Michael Williams to three years and approved a restraining order. Jack Williams was sentenced to 16 months imprisonment for the offence.


Aaron and Melissa Stubbs

Siblings Aaron and Melissa Stubbs vowed to teach Melissa's ex-boyfriend, Warren Glover, "a lesson" after Mr Glover sent abusive and threatening messages to her and their parents when she told him they could not resume their relationship. Aaron Stubbs also recruited two friends, Stephen Strutt and Peter Walker, to join them and the gang-of-four set off from their home in Manchester and drove to St Helens to look for Mr Glover, even stopping for beers on the way.

The 33-year-old was found unconscious in French Street, St Helens at around 10.15pm, on June 13, 2020, and died from a catastrophic brain injury three weeks later in hospital. Melissa Stubbs, then 30, Aaron Stubbs, also 30, their friend Strutt, 39, and Strutt's brother-in-law Walker, 31, were later charged with "joint enterprise" murder and convicted after a six week trial at Liverpool Crown Court.

They denied arming themselves with weapons to attack Mr Glover - with Aaron insisting he just intended to "confront" him and expected an apology.

Aaron Stubbs was jailed for life with a minimum term of 21 years and six months; Melissa Stubbs received a 20 years and six months minimum term; Walker 20 years and six months and Strutt 20 years.


Martin and Liam Grant

Liverpool man Martin Grant was jailed for 14 years and six months (MerPol)

Martin Grant 33, and his brother Liam used the EncroChat phone network to supply drugs. Martin Grant was a significant player in Class A drugs while his younger brother Liam was a 'cannabis wholesaler.' SC. Grant began using the Encro handle SwiftOrchid shortly after his release from prison on licence in September 2019.

Grant, a dad-of-two, had been jailed for ten years in 2015 for slashing a man across the face with a knife. The victim suffered life changing injuries.

Ben Jones, prosecuting, told the court how Martin Grant discussed laundering drug money with his brother, Liam. Mr Jones said Martin Grant considered buying their mum's house so they could launder their profits from the cannabis trade.

Liam Grant used the Encro handle Beigepalm (Merseyside Police)

Mr Jones said Martin Grant appeared to be distributing drugs to the midlands, Lancashire and Carlisle. Martin Grant pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, conspiracy to supply heroin, conspiracy to supply amphetamine and conspiracy to supply cannabis.

Judge Watson jailed the Old Swan man for 14 years and six months. His brother Liam was jailed for four years and six months.

Liam Grant, of Holland Street in Fairfield, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, conspiracy to supply amphetamine and conspiracy to supply cannabis.


Michael and James Foy

Michael Rainsford was struck by two bullets fired from within his own back garden on the night of April 7, 2020. Michael and James Foy were found guilty in Liverpool Crown Court following a four week trial.

Prosecutors had argued the shooting was an act of “supposed retribution” for bricks being thrown at their Seaforth home less than an hour before Mr Rainsford was targeted two miles away in Litherland. Prosecutors argued Michael, 22, and James, 19 were part of the South Sefton gang scene through their association with the Linacre Young Guns and the shooting was a display of “lethal force” designed to show they would not stand for being targeted themselves.

Their vicious actions were said to have been motivated by revenge but, tragically, there was clear evidence Mr Rainsford played no role in the brick attack and nothing to suggest he was directly involved in any dispute involving the Foys.

Both brothers denied murder until, moments before they were sentenced to life terms, James Foy’s barrister told the court the then-teenager wanted the world to know he had pulled the trigger. James Foy was sentenced to life with a minimum of 28 years and Michael Foy was sentenced to life with a minimum of 30 years.


Michael and Peter Moogan

Michael and Peter Moogan were jailed for 11 years and three months each after Liverpool Crown Court heard they shared an EncroChat device to buy and sell cocaine. The well known brothers were arrested after police penetrated the encrypted phone network used by crooks to sell drugs and plan serious crimes.

The brothers shared pictures of their children, vehicles, homes and relevant postcodes through EncroChat while on April 1, 2020 - Peter’s 38th birthday - a number of happy birthday messages were received by their account. Their device had 42 contacts stored in it and their messages revealed details to buy and sell cocaine to accounts including DubFox, RareIvy, TopGolfer and ZonalPizza.


Craig Treverrow and David Gamble

Craig Treverrow and David Gamble ran off after attacking and leaving a man for dead, leaving him bleeding heavily. Treverrow was confronted shortly after the incident by Robert Hughes, a relative of the victim's partner, and said: “I have just done your man.”

When questioned he pulled out a knife and became angry and shortly afterwards lunged at the man’s partner. Treverrow ran off when he heard the police were on the way and was “completely off his face,” said Peter Killen, prosecuting. Gamble, who had repeatedly struck 35-year-old victim John Peter Smith with a plank of wood before his brother knifed him three times in the back, was also arrested after voluntarily surrendering himself.

Treverrow, 31, of Dovecot Place, Dovecot, admitted wounding and threatening with a bladed article. He was jailed for three years. Gamble, 25, also of Dovecot Place, was jailed for two years after pleading guilty to wounding.



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