Gravesend county line drug dealers jailed for more than 20 years
PUBLISHED: 17:00 11 December 2018
County line drug dealers who supplied heroin and crack cocaine in Gravesend have been jailed for more than 20 years combined.
Seun Daramola, Christopher Bolokor, Kirk Huggins, Tasharn Reid-Watson and Rene Joseph all conspired to supply the class A substances across 2017. Their offending was brought to an end after Kent Police officers carried out a series of warrants and proactive stop checks.
They were each sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court on Thursday, December 6 following a trial.
The court heard that in May 2017 Kent Police launched an investigation into offenders who were travelling from London to supply heroin and crack cocaine in Gravesend. They were identified as the “Star” network.
Kent Police’s Operation Raptor team for north Kent began an investigation after multiple intelligence reports revealed Daramola, 34, was co-ordinating the supply of the class A substances in the town.
Bolokor, 22, and Reid-Watson, 21, were arrested together after officers carried out a warrant at an address in Waterdales, Northfleet, in May 2017.
As entry was being forced to the property, both men were seen jumping over fences in an attempt to escape capture but were detained close to the scene.
A sandwich bag containing 14 wraps of heroin, which Bolokor was seen throwing while running, was also recovered. DNA analysis proved Bolokor had been in contact with the drugs.
Joseph, 32, was arrested four days later after officers stopped a silver Lexus in Gravesend.
He initially failed to stop when requested to do so and was seen throwing heroin and cocaine from his car while driving away at speed but he stopped the car after a short pursuit.
He attempted to provide officers with a false name and checks in custody revealed he had been disqualified from driving and had no insurance.
Huggins, 31, was arrested on June 30, 2017 after officers forced entry to a home in Wallace Park, Gravesend.
He was found on a sofa and handed over a quantity of money and drug wraps which he had hidden in his trainer.
Daramola was detained on September 6, 2017 following a pursuit through Gravesend.
Officers requested a black BMW, which was known to be linked to the drug network, to stop in Hall Road.
The driver refused to stop and a pursuit took place through residential streets, often overtaking traffic by driving on the wrong side of the road. The pursuit ended when the BMW collided with a parked car in Cambrian Road.
Daramola, who was driving the car, attempted to run away on foot but was stopped while attempting to climb a wall. A quantity of crack cocaine, three phones and a large amount of cash was found in his possession.
The crack cocaine was found to have a 95per cent purity.
Three people who acted as street level dealers were also part of the trial.
Thomas Street, who lived at the address where Huggins was arrested, was charged after his DNA was also found on the package officers seized from Huggins’ trainer.
Sally Taylor and Lee Tait were also arrested on September 6, 2017 after a drug warrant was carried out at an address in Lennox Avenue, Gravesend. Both were found inside the property with a small amount of class A drugs, 10 mobile phones and a large amount of cash.
Evidence seized from each of the arrests provided strong evidence that each offender was involved in the supply of heroin and crack cocaine, with Daramola controlling the operation.
Analysis of mobile phones seized from each arrest revealed the defendants had been in regular communication with Daramola, who in turn had regularly paid for the devices to be topped up.
DNA analysis of the packages found during the arrests of Bolokor, Reid-Watson and Joseph all provided a match for Daramola.
Daramola, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply heroin and conspiring to supply crack cocaine and was jailed for six years and four months.
Joseph, of Stamford Hill in Stamford Hill, pleaded not guilty to conspiring to supply heroin, conspiring to supply crack cocaine. He pleaded guilty to driving while disqualified, fraud by false representation and using a motor vehicle without third party insurance. He was found guilty of the drug offences and jailed for five years and four months.
Huggins, of Blithdale Road, Abbey Wood, pleaded not guilty to conspiring to supply heroin and conspiring to supply crack cocaine. He was found guilty and jailed for four years.
Bolokor, of Woking Close, Roehampton, pleaded not guilty to conspiring to supply heroin. He was found guilty and jailed for three and a half years.
Reid-Watson, of Willington Road, Stockwell, pleaded not guilty to conspiring to supply heroin. He was found guilty and jailed for three and a half years.
Taylor and Tait, both of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to allowing a premises to be used to supply crack cocaine. They will be sentenced on Friday, January 18.
Street, of Wallis Park, Northfleet, pleaded not guilty to conspiring to supply heroin, conspiring to supply crack cocaine and possessing amphetamine with intent to supply. He was found guilty and will also be sentenced on Friday, January 18.
Following the trial, investigating officer Det Con Stuart Clayton said: “Each offender was actively involved in supplying heroin and crack cocaine in Gravesend over a prolonged period of time.
“They each sought to profit from their activity and showed little regard for the disruption the supply of drugs can have on communities.
“This investigation removed a well organised supply chain from the streets of Gravesend but we will not be complacent in our approach to organised crime.
“People travelling into Kent to supply class A drugs can expect to be targeted by our officers who will use the full remit of the law to bring them to justice, as this case shows.”