A MAN who tried to get rid of a sub-machine gun used in an unsolved murder has been jailed for 11½ years.

Andrew Cross, 28, of Abbey Field, Colchester, was cleared of murdering Larry Malone in London on September 3, 2009.

But Cross was convicted of having a prohibited firearm – a loaded Mac 10 – following a trial at the Old Bailey.

The gun was used to shoot Mr Malone dead as he sat on the sofa at his aunt’s South London home.

The shooting followed an alleged drug row.

Cross was one of five gangsters who tried to dispose of the sub-machine gun.

After sentencing, Det Insp Tony Boughton said: “I am pleased with the lengthy prison sentences this group has received and that officers have managed to take very dangerous offenders and a loaded automatic machine gun off the streets.”

Lemuel Robinson, 27, of Collingwood Road, Sutton, Surrey, Shubiah Linton, 28, of no fixed address, and Dino Rouillon, 34, from Croydon, admitted possessing the loaded weapon. Shevonne Legister, 21, Robinson’s girlfriend, admitted the same offence and was convicted of assisting an offender following a separate trial.

Legister, of Wolfington Road, West Norwood, SouthEast London, was jailed for five years.

She was the last of the gang to be jailed and their sentences can now be revealed after Judge Gerald Gordon allowed reporting restrictions to be lifted.

Robinson was given ten years, Linton nine years and Rouillon five years and nine months.

Robinson, Cross and Legister were cleared of murder.

Detectives investigating the shooting followed Legister as she took a taxi from her home to meet a white van in nearby Anerley Park.

Police watched from a distance as a bag was handed to Rouillon before officers swooped and arrested the duo.

Forensic examiners were unable to find any fingerprints or DNA on the weapon. Prosecutor Andrew Edis described attempts to dispose of the gun as a sophisticated criminal operation.