UK

Elite soldier sold bullets to ‘drug dealer’ who was really an undercover policeman, court hears

Elite soldier sold bullets to ‘drug dealer’ who was really an undercover policeman catching him in a sting, court hears

  • Regimental Sergeant Major Kirtland Gill, 41, allegedly plotted to sell bullets
  • He was the first black man to hold his post in the Queen’s Coldstream Guards
  • He and an accomplice were caught in their plot by an undercover police sting 

The most senior enlisted soldier in the Queen’s elite bodyguard regiment sold rounds of ammunition just moments after boasting of his promotion, a court heard yesterday.

Regimental Sergeant Major Kirtland Gill, 41, the first black man to hold that post in the Coldstream Guards, allegedly plotted to sell hundreds of bullets with Lance Sergeant Rajon Graham.

But the pair were caught in a police sting after the buyer claiming to be a drug dealer turned out to be an undercover police officer, it was said.

Southwark Crown Court heard that the two soldiers had access to bullets issued for firing practice.

The Coldstream Guards is the oldest continuously serving regiment in the Army. Recognised by their red jackets and black bearskin hats, the unit has a ceremonial role as protectors of royal palaces, including Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace.

The Coldstream Guards is the oldest continuously serving regiment in the Army and can be recognised by their red jackets and black bearskin hats

Gill, who had a ‘particular responsibility for the protection of the Queen’, is accused of supplying the ammunition which 33-year-old Graham sold to the undercover officer for £5,800, handing over bundles of bullets at meetings at a Tesco car park in Windsor.

Duncan Atkinson QC, prosecuting, said: ‘The Coldstream Guards … have a need for large quantities of ammunition both for combat and for training for combat.’

He added: ‘This defendant was part of a plan, with others, to sell ammunition to which they had access through their roles in the Army. Throughout… the defendant was in very regular contact by telephone and especially via Whats- App with Rajon Graham.

‘Graham, in turn, was in regular contact with a man he believed to be involved in criminal activity, including activity relating to drugs, who he believed wanted to buy ammunition and indeed firearms… That man was and is an undercover police officer.’

Gill, who had just been chosen to be its first black Regimental Sergeant Major, was responsible for managing the ammunition used in firing practice.

On December 17, 2020 Gill gave an interview to a national newspaper about the promotion before meeting Graham and an undercover officer known as D to hand over the ammunition in Bacofoil bags, the jury heard.

WhatsApp messages, mobile phone location data and police surveillance links Gill to the plot, the jury was told.

The defendant, who joined the Army in 2001, denies conspiracy to sell or transfer ammunition.

Graham has already admitted selling 300 rounds of live 9mm ammunition worth £5,800 to a man he believed to be ‘involved in criminal activity and drug dealing’, Mr Atkinson said.

Jurors heard the bullets, which Graham, dubbed ‘sweets’ were sold in four transactions.

After the last batch of 100 rounds was handed over for £1,900, Graham and Gill were arrested.

Gill, of Windsor, also denies possession of a prohibited weapon.

The trial continues.

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