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Detectives have warned organised criminals that they will continue to bring them to justice after four men, including one from Meopham, were jailed for a total of 25 years for selling drugs to undercover police officers.

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The four-month investigation by the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate into drug supply in west Kent ended with the sentencing of the dealers at Maidstone Crown Court on Monday.

Mark Burrell, 51, his son Daniel Burrell, 22, and friends Richard Hampson, 31, and Billy Smith, 29, had all pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of cocaine between October 2011 and January 2012.

Det Insp Eddie Fox, from the Serious Crime Directorate, said: “This was a challenging investigation during which we were able to get to the heart of this criminal group responsible for supplying large quantities of drugs across the west Kent area.

Disrupting activity

“The sentences reflect the seriousness of the crimes committed and the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate will continue to take action to identify and target such dealers, disrupting their activity and bringing them to justice.”

Mark Burrell, of Sylvestres, Riverhead, Sevenoaks, was jailed for eight years, Daniel Burrell, of Ferndown, Meopham, was sentenced to five years and Hampson, of Guildford Road, Tunbridge Wells, and Smith, of Watercress Close, Sevenoaks, each received six years.

All four were arrested on February 1 after warrants were executed after the culmination of a four-month undercover operation during which the Burrells offered to supply cocaine to undercover officers via their associate Hampson.

On two occasions Hampson supplied cocaine totalling five-and-a-half ounces with a purity in excess of 70 per cent. The Burrells then made further arrangements for Smith to supply cocaine – an ounce at 100 per cent and then a kilogram at 97 per cent purity.

For more news, advice and information from Kent Police, visit www.kent.police.uk, follow ‘kent_police’ on Twitter or search ‘Kent Police’ on Facebook.

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