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7 August 2015, 06:42
Two men have been sentenced for their involvement in the supply of class A drugs in St Neots.
Keith Gates, 40, of Henbrook, St Neots, was caught by officers after a young boy found a pouch of drugs on a footpath.
The child was walking with his mother in Eynesbury on November 15 last year when he picked up a bag of brown powder, believed to be heroin.
Luckily the mother noticed her child with the bag and managed to take it off him just as he was about to put it in his mouth.
Following reports of this incident, officers conducted covert patrols in the area and identified Gates as being concerned in the supply of drugs.
A week later, on November 23, he was arrested at The Priory pub in St Neots after an eagle-eyed doorman suspected Gates was trying to hide drugs. He was later found to be in possession of cannabis, crack cocaine and £690 in cash.
Gates was granted bail while officers continued their enquiries which identified daily drug deals by him, as well as a second man, Andrew Lloyd, 40, of High Street, Tadlow, Royston.
The pair were seen to leave the St Neots area and head for Bedford on January 15 this year, returning to Springbrook in St Neots a short while later. Both were arrested by police who had been monitoring their movements and later charged with supplying heroin.
Gates was also charged with dealing crack cocaine and possession with intent to supply heroin.
After initially denying the charges, both pleaded guilty at a hearing at Peterborough Crown Court on June 6.
Gates was sentenced to three years and four months in prison at the same court on July 27. He was told he must forfeit all drugs and paraphernalia, as well as pay £755 in costs.
Lloyd was sentenced to two years, suspended for 12 months and made subject of a curfew between 10pm and 6am for six months.
DC Tom Nuttall said: "We will not tolerate the supply of drugs in our community and will do all that we can to make sure people are kept safe from harm.
"Because of Gates' actions, a young boy came into contact with a class A drug. Thankfully his mother reacted quickly and managed to stop him from putting the pouch in his mouth, but this could have easily been a very different story."
Anyone who suspects the supply of drugs is happening in their neighbourhood can contact police by calling 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.