Drug dealers jailed in Essex

Eight drug dealers arrested during a series of raids in the Braintree area in August, have been jailed for a total of more than 28 years.

A further eleven men and women have pleaded guilty and will be sentenced on November 29 and December 13.

The men, from Essex and London, all pleaded guilty to charges of supplying and being concerned in the supply of class A drugs at Chelmsford Crown Court on Monday, November 1, 2010.

A team of around 50 police officers were involved in the raids targeting suppliers and users of illegal substances in Braintree in August this year.

Andrew Burtenshaw, 34, of Beach Road, Clacton, pleaded guilty to three counts of supplying heroin and one of cocaine and was jailed for four years, six months.

Dean Hughes, 28, of Hardy Close, Braintree was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment after admitting three counts of supplying heroin.

Jason Baker, 35, of King Edward Way, Witham, pleaded guilty to supplying heroin and crack cocaine and offering to supply heroin. He was jailed for four years.

Peter Baker, 37, also of King Edward Way, Witham, was sentenced to three years and six months imprisonment after admitting being concerned in the supply of crack cocaine.

Francis Kuseju, 23, of Wilmot Close, London SE15, admitting six counts of supplying heroin and six of supplying crack cocaine. He was jailed for five years.

Robert Potter, 45, of Rifle Hill, Braintree, was jailed for two years and eight months after admitting one count of supplying heroin.

Robert Brown, 35, pleaded guilty to five counts of supplying heroin and was sentenced to four years imprisonment.

James Jeffrey, 26 from Coggeshall Road, Braintree, pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to supplying class A drugs and was sentenced to two years 6 months.

Chief Inspector Nick Lee, Braintree District Commander said: “The sentencing of these people today concludes a very successful operation for Essex Police and the residents of Braintree.

“The operation was made possible by public support and information that was given by the citizens of Braintree. This information led to a team of dedicated and professional detectives and officers being assembled who made the arrests that have resulted in convictions and prison sentences for a number of people.

“This operation highlights the positive effects that can be achieved when police and the community work together to combat problems. Addiction to drugs is a serious issue and police remain committed to deal with this problem.

“I intend to continue to work with other agencies to offer support to people who have a drug addiction and to show them that there is alternative to this lifestyle.

“I can promise that further enforcement activity will continue across the whole of Braintree District, especially where drug dealing is taking place. I would urge anybody who has a friend or family member involved in drugs to seek help and would encourage them to contact Open Road on 0844 499 1323 who can offer support and advice.

“I would like to request that anybody who sees or suspects drug dealing any where in the Braintree District contacts Essex Police on 0300 333 4444 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."

Ds Kerry Hackett from Braintree CID said: “Drugs have a hugely detrimental effect on our society. Drug use leads to splits within families and communities, antisocial behaviour, and further crimes such as burglary and theft. These sentences demonstrate how seriously the police and courts view such crimes and hopefully will act as a deterrent for others.”