An ex-Croydon pharmacy manager has been jailed for selling the drugs used to make a highly addictive opioid drink to a London drug chain.

Shamil Amin, 34, was working as a Pharmacy Manager at two pharmacies, one in Croydon and another in Horsham.

He began illegally selling pharmaceuticals, predominantly codeine, to 26-year-old Daniel Tillyard who then used the drugs to make a syrup-based opioid drink.

This is known as “lean” and is a cocktail of highly addictive substances including codeine, promethazine and sometimes morphine.

It is classed as a class B drug if it contains codeine, but if the drink contains morphine instead it is upgraded to a class A.

Drug experts explained to the court that consuming lean could cause serious respiratory issues, organ damage and even death.

Many of the bottles that Tillyard was selling contained morphine as a replacement for the codeine, which brings a higher risk to health.

Your Local Guardian: Evidence taken from mobile phoneEvidence taken from mobile phone

In 2020 Tillyard began dealing with Amin to further his aspiration of turning his ‘lean’ production into a large-scale business named Zillaceuticals.

They had the dream of becoming the sole supplier to the whole of London.

Tillyard aimed to create 5,000 bottles of the opioid drink with the products provided by Amin, which has a street value of around £250,000.

A text message Tillyard wrote reads: “I wanna take over the whole of London with this lean ting.”

Detectives discovered text messages about the plot to sell ‘lean’ during a separate investigation into drug supply in Surrey.

They were both arrested in May last year when a search of Tillyard’s phone found that he had supplied over 2000 ecstasy pills and offered a ‘menu’ of over a dozen different drugs.

Your Local Guardian: A search of Tillyard’s phone found that he had supplied over 2000 ecstasy pillsA search of Tillyard’s phone found that he had supplied over 2000 ecstasy pills

Police also found over two kilograms of cannabis in Tillyard’s bedroom.

Shamil Amin, 34, of Copse Hill in Croydon, was sentenced to two years and five months in prison at Guildford Crown Court on May 17 after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply class A and class B drugs.

Daniel Tillyard, 26, of Victoria Park Square in Tower Hamlets, was sentenced to six years and nine months in prison at Guildford Crown Court after pleading guilty to six counts of conspiracy to supply class A drugs, four counts of conspiracy to supply class B drugs and two counts of conspiracy to supply class C drugs.

Detective Constable Philip Potter said: “This was a large-scale plot by Tillyard, who aspired to be a big-time drug dealer in London.

“The fact that he is now behind bars means that his aspiration has not become a reality, Thanks to the hard work of officers and detectives, Tillyard’s plot to produce and supply lean, facilitated by Amin, has been stopped in its tracks.

“Drug dealing blights communities and exploits the vulnerable, which is why we work tirelessly to stop it from taking place on the streets of Surrey.”