A group of Blackburn men filmed and shared pictures of cannabis on phones before selling it and describing the drug as "straight fire".

Habib Khan, 29, of Whalley Old Road, his brother Valli Khan, 24, of Hastings Close, Abdullah Patel, 39, of Preston New Road, Hammid Zafri, 26, of Coniston Road, and Leon Yates, 18, of Sandwich Close, all appeared at Preston Crown Court earlier this week.

Prosecutor Chloe Fordham told the court how on Tuesday, January 17, 2023, police attended Vali Khan's address, and during a search of the property, they found approximately half a kilogram of cannabis, £2,000 in cash, empty snap bags for dealing and two mobile phones.

Ms Fordham said at interview Vali Khan answered 'no comment' to the police's questions, but when further investigation was carried out on his mobile phone "it showed clear evidence" of plans to sell the drug

Messages between Vali Khan and Habib Khan were read out in court, describing how the brothers had sent pictures and videos of the cannabis to each other.

On searching the Khan's parents' address in Primrose Drive, Blackburn, police also found a BB gun and knuckle dusters belonging to Habib Khan.

On January 26, 2023, UK Border Force officers stopped half a kilogram of cannabis from entering the country from Los Angeles, where Habib Khan had recently been on holiday.

Police also found videos and pictures of cannabis shared between Vali Khan and Patel from 2021, and messages stating they could "accept Irish and Scottish bank notes".

The men also described the quality of the cannabis as "hard" and "straight fire", paired with diamond and fire emojis.

The court heard Yates's role in the operation was to sell the cannabis at street level, as messages were also sent by him asking where his wages were, and that he had smoked some of the cannabis himself.

While the Khan brothers had no previous convictions, Patel has 12 convictions for 22 previous offences, three of which include possession with intent to supply cannabis.

Zafri has two convictions for two offences, mainly for dangerous driving, and Yates had a number of convictions as a youth.

Yates, Patel, and the Khans all pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply a class B drug, cannabis, while Zafri pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of a class B drug, cannabis.

The prosecution said Valli Khan's role in the conspiracy was "leading and significant", and Patel and Zafri were also significant as while the quantities of the cannabis were unknown from their phones, messages spanned across six months.

Habib Khan's role was also considered significant as he organised the importation of the drug from the United States.

In sentencing, Judge Simon Medland KC said: "This case is a terrible shame and fall from grace, as some of you are of previous good character.

"Time and time again I see people seriously impacted in their physical and mental health because of this drug. Drugs like this are dangerous and destroy people's lives."

Valli Khan was jailed for 28 months, while his brother Habib Khan was jailed for 32 months.

Patel was sentenced to 27 months in jail, while Zafri received an 18 month sentence.

Yates was handed an 18 month sentence, suspended for two years, which would be served in a young offenders institution.