Wstrn singer Akelle jailed for gun possession

This gun and sinister clown mask were seized from the boot of a rental car after we arrested the driver and his passenger at gunpoint at a service station.

Police arrested Akelle Charles and Ricardo Thomas from the vehicle, and in the boot found the pistol, 15 rounds of ammunition and the mask.

Our investigation found the gun had previously been used in a shooting in London.








The car had been driven up from the capital to Wolverhampton late on 26 October – the day before the pair were arrested.

Charles and Thomas made a stop in the Cannock Road area of the city on the afternoon of 27 October, before heading on to the M40 and stopping at southbound Warwick Services where they were arrested, just before 9pm.

The pistol, which was recovered from a black Nike manbag, was forensically examined and linked to bullet cases left at the scene of a shooting in London a month earlier, where a number of shots were fired at a house.

Charles’ home was just over two miles from the scene of the shooting, although there was no evidence linking him to it.








Chats recovered from the men’s phone suggested they both had heavy involvement and knowledge of firearms.

Det Insp Amar Patel, from the West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit, said: “These men were heading back towards London at the time of their arrest with a loaded firearm, gloves and a mask in a car hired in someone else’s name.

“We’ll never know what their plans were, but we have taken a loaded gun and two dangerous men off the streets.”

Thomas of St Albans Road, Smethwick, and Charles, of Devonport Road, London, both 33, admitted possession of a firearm and ammunition.

At Birmingham Crown Court yesterday (7 May), Ricardo Thomas was jailed for eight years and Akelle Charles was jailed for six years and nine months.

The convictions forms part of Operation Target, our ongoing fight against serious and organised crime in the West Midlands.

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