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Four defendants sentenced to over 30 years in prison for drugs offences

November 4, 2014, 2:44 pm

Four defendants have been sentenced to a total of 34 years in prison after pleading guilty to a range of offences including conspiracy to supply over £370,000 worth of controlled drugs.

Michael Bennett, 34, and Terence Cowan, 24, both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply controlled drugs, cocaine, and possession of a loaded 9mm handgun and silencer when they appeared at Chester Crown Court on Thursday 30th October.

Bennett, of Sandstone Drive, Prescott, Liverpool, was sentenced to a total of 16 years in prison, and Cowan, of McKeagney Gardens, Widnes, received a sentence of 14 years.

Bekki Shepherd, 23, also of McKeagney Gardens, Widnes, plead guilty to being concerned in the supply of controlled drugs, cocaine, and received a of 4 year custodial sentence.

A fourth defendant Lauren Major, 32, of Lancaster Road, Widnes, plead guilty to allowing her home to be used to store controlled drugs and was given a suspended prison sentence and 250 hours community service.

The four defendants were all arrested as part of Operation Caiman, a pro-active investigation conducted by Cheshire Police into the illegal supply of Class A drugs in Widnes and the South of England.

Both Cowan and Shepard were arrested on 20th May 2014 at their home addresses, where officers recovered a significant quantity of controlled drugs.

Bennett was arrested at his home address in Liverpool and a further police raid at another address in Widnes, that had been rented by Major and used by Bennett and Cowan to prepare the drugs, resulted in the recovery of significant amounts of class A drugs and a firearm and ammunition.

During the operation it was identified that both Bennett and Cowan assisted by Shepherd had been travelling to Devon and Cornwall to supply controlled drugs on a regular basis.

Cheshire Police Assistant Chief Constable Guy Hindle said: “This investigation focused upon stemming the supply of drugs in Widnes and also as far as the South of the country.

“Our work resulted in the recovery of a firearm, drugs and cash, leading to sophisticated drug dealers being jailed for a total of over 30 years. These convictions show how we can have a significant impact on those who seek to profit from drugs supply which causes misery and fear.

“I would urge anyone in the community who knows individuals who are involved in the supply of drugs to pass on whatever information they have to the Police by calling 101. If they want to do this anonymously they can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 and we will act on it to make a difference in your community. This case proves how information from the community can put drug dealers in jail.”

Contact Crimestoppers anonymously with information about crime

101 – The police non-emergency number

101 is the number to call when you want to contact your local police in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland – when it’s less urgent than a 999 call.
Find out more information about 101 by following this link.

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