Drugs gang jailed after selling crack cocaine and heroin in Stratford
MEMBERS of a County Lines gang have been jailed after they trafficked drugs valued at almost £250,000 from Coventry onto the streets of tourist towns, including Stratford and Leamington.
The drugs network, which was brought down by the West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit working with Warwickshire Police, saw at least 2.5kg of crack cocaine and heroin moved into the towns.
Hundreds of marketing messages were sent to users by the gang from their main drugs hotline, including ones saying: ‘Come and get ur tackle, still in stock. Best of both’ and ‘Active around the clock. Best in town’.
Levi Pollard-Mersom, who ran the line using the brand names Kano and CJ, used addicts to run drugs, carry out the street deals, and also ‘cuckooed’ homes of vulnerable people to use as supply bases.
The 29-year-old was arrested while drug dealing from a Ford Fiesta in a car park on the outskirts of Stratford on 19th June, 2020. A one-year-old child was also in the car from which police recovered cocaine and heroin.
Jordan Hill, 31, was another senior member of the gang. He managed deliveries, controlled others, carried out violent acts, and took orders.
Pollard-Mersom’s brother, 20-year-old Paul Walker, initially helped deliver and store drugs, and later took ownership of the line after police arrested Levi.
Lewis Kerr, 29, acted as transport and muscle for the group and was looking to expand the line into Rugby.
Kieron Hill, 23, Nell Desnousse, 22, Hasum Makalo, 18, Gary Brown, 19, and 36-year-old Amy Lamb all acted as drugs runners.
Pollard-Mersom, Kieron and Jordan Hill, Lamb and Desnousse all admitted conspiracy to supply crack cocaine and heroin, while Walker and Kerr were both found guilty following trial.
And at Warwick Crown Court on Friday (18th November) they were jailed for a total of 45 years and four months between them.
Pollard-Mersom was given 12 years and nine months, with Judge Cook highlighting his use of violence and his cuckooing of vulnerable people.
Walker was sentenced to 10 years, Kieron Hill was jailed for eight years and three months, and Kerr, seven years.
Lamb, who the judge said had been actively engaged with customers during lockdown, was jailed for five years and six months, while Desnousse, described as a busy foot soldier, got 22 months.
Jordan Hill will be sentenced on 13th December, and Brown and Makalo had previously been sentenced and are serving jail terms of five years eight months, and six years, respectively.
Detective Inspector Julie Woods, of West Midlands Police, said: “This was a classic County Lines operation. Pollard-Mersom was in charge from a distance, making up to £1,500 per day, and controlled the others through violence, threats and reputation.
“He made most of the money but exposed himself to very little risk, while the drug runners faced the very real danger of being attacked with weapons by rival gangs or being arrested on the street.
“During the investigation we recovered more than 1,000 wraps of heroin and crack cocaine plus nearly £10,000 in cash.
“The men in charge of this operation have shown themselves as callous individuals driven by greed and were happy to make money on others’ suffering.
“They have rightly been handed lengthy jail sentences.”