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Police unravel major drug network with nine men jailed for more than 60 years

Nine men involved in a significant drug supply and distribution network between Liverpool and Northamptonshire have been jailed for a total of almost 62 years.

Through a large-scale investigation, detectives from the East Midlands Special Operations Unit’s Regional Organised Crime Unit (EMSOU ROCU) unravelled the men’s various roles in bringing Class A and B drugs from Merseyside into Kettering, Corby and Northampton over a period of at least 24 months, between August 2019 and August 2021.

Officers were able to establish that three Liverpool men had made at least 28 trips to Northamptonshire, delivering packages of cocaine and amphetamine and returning home with thousands of pounds in cash.

Investigations revealed repeat meetings with a man in Kettering, and with at least six further wholesale purchasers in Northampton and Corby.

On September 29 and October 1, 2021, a number of warrants were executed in connection with the investigation, resulting in the arrest and charge of the ten on a range of drugs-related offences.

All went on to enter guilty pleas during subsequent court hearings, with four men all pleading guilty at the outset of their trial on May 2 and 3.

At Northampton Crown Court on Tuesday 30 May, nine of the group were sentenced to a total of 61 years and eight months in prison, with the ringleader receiving a total sentence of 12 years and nine months.

Sentencing, Judge David Herbert said: “(The ringleader) is the principal member of the defendant group. He occasionally came to Northamptonshire to oversee ‘business’ and he would have been the person out of all these men who would have profited the most.”

Speaking afterwards, investigator Hazel Score, from EMSOU ROCU, said: “This sentencing result represents a huge amount of painstaking, tireless work by our team, who gathered detailed and compelling evidence which gave these ten defendants no choice but to enter guilty pleas.

“A substantial amount of illegal drugs were bought and sold by these individuals, with a conservative estimated street value of £885,500 which illustrates the large-scale nature of the dealing involved.

“The ringleader in particular was shown to be in contact with every single person in this case, and no doubt many others elsewhere, so in breaking up this network of criminals we’re confident we’ve removed a major source of Class A and Class B drugs in Northamptonshire and beyond.”

Detective Inspector Darren Brown, also of EMSOU ROCU, added: “I’m really pleased that the sentences imposed reflect the severity of the offending, and also the dedication and attention to detail our team put into this case. Rest assured, if you’re involved in the supply of illegal drugs in our region, sooner or later we will catch up with you and it will be your turn to face justice too.”

If you have information about suspected drug dealing, please report it by calling 101, or 999 in an emergency. Information can also be shared anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

For details of the charges and sentences, please click here.


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