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Thursday, 02 October 2014

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Seven sentenced for 21 years for drug supply in Barrow

SEVEN people have been sentenced for their role in a drug ring which has been supplying Class A drugs in Barrow and south Cumbria.

Their sentences are part of an investigation which was a follow on from Operation Axe, which was led by the South Area Drugs Unit into the supply of drugs.

Collectively the seven received sentences totalling 21 years and one month.

The seven people who were sentenced for their role in the supply of Class A drugs were:

• Robert Snelham, aged 23, of Deansburn Road, Liverpool was sentenced to five years in prison

• James Byott, aged 20, of Garnett Avenue, Liverpool was sentenced to four years and six months in prison

• Hasan Ahmed, aged 22, of Hesketh Avenue, Liverpool was sentenced to four years and six months in prison

• Paul Johnson, aged 27, of Scafell Walk, Liverpool was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison

• Lee Hathaway, aged 26, of Whitney Road, Liverpool was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison

• Daniel Miller, aged 26, of Devon Street, Barrow in Furness was sentenced to 21 months in prison

• Amy Spellman, aged 22, of Tay Court, Barrow in Furness received a community and supervision order

Hathaway, Johnson and Miller were sentenced on June 13 and Spellman, Snelham, Ahmed and Byott were sentenced today at Preston Crown Court.

Their sentencing brings an end to another successful pro-active investigation targeting those who ply their drugs trade in south Cumbria. It was evident in this case that the trade was lucrative and was being orchestrated by a Merseyside criminal gang.

More than £4000 worth of heroin and crack cocaine was recovered during this investigation along with nearly £2000 in cash.

Class A drugs would be available on a daily basis and police identified two locations in Barrow that were at the centre of this supply - the home addresses of Daniel Miller and Amy Spellman.

The first arrests occurred on the November 26 at Spelman’s home in Tay Court, Barrow.

Officers found Byott, Snelham, Ahmed and Spellman at this address.

When officers searched Ahmed they found a significant amount of heroin and crack cocaine along with £1600 in cash. Further amounts of cash and drugs were located within the premises.

Through extensive analytical work the investigation team were able to interrogate their mobile phones and present to the court the true extent of their criminal behaviour.

The second arrest phase was conducted on the November 27 when a warrant was carried out in Devon Street, Barrow.

When officers entered this property they found Johnson and Hathaway.

When Hathaway was detained, officers saw a package protruding from his trouser pocket – this was later identified as numerous street deals of heroin.

When Johnson was detained he was found in possession of a list that had the phone numbers of numerous local heroin users. The numbers on this list were significant to this drug supply trade.

During the warrant Miller returned home and was arrested for his part in the enterprise.

Officers once again carried out extensive interrogation of mobile phones and were able to show the criminal behaviour of this gang. From a mobile phone belonging to Miller, officers recovered text messages such as ‘best brown in town’ which is slang for heroin and Miller indicating that drugs were for sale.

Detective Constable Jamie Eaton who led the investigation said: “This brings to an end an investigation conducted by Cumbria Police and in particular the South Area Drug Squad and Pro Active Team.

“Officers worked tirelessly on this investigation to target and remove key figures in this criminal group.

“There are numerous departments within Cumbria Police that assisted in this investigation and without them results like this are not possible.

“Cumbria Police will continue to target criminal groups who have an impact on our communities.

“We are committed to apprehending those responsible for drug supply and are quick to identify those who are integral in this trade.

“Once identified we pro-actively target them and through hard work and determination we bring them to justice for their criminal behaviour.

“This has been evident by the recent seizures and arrests in the South Cumbria area.”

Anyone who has any information in to the supply of drugs is asked to contact Cumbria Police on 101.

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