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Thursday, 10 July 2014

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Nine in court after Cumbria police drug probes

Nine people appeared at court following two separate undercover police investigations into the supply of hard drugs in Cumbria.

All but two pleaded guilty at Carlisle Crown Court to a variety of charges relating to the supply of class A and class B drugs.

Another man had his case heard earlier in the week and also pleaded guilty.

They were all arrested after police operations code-named Silkworm and Adder. Those in court yesterday were:

Roger Joseph Fox, 37, of Greta Avenue, Morton, Carlisle; Steven John Smith, 31, of Towncroft, Dearham; Luke Babester, 39, from Milnthorpe near Kendal; Martin Smith, 30, of Grange Avenue, Flimby; Grant Robertson, 27, of Barepot, Workington; Michael Britland, 29, of McMinn Avenue, St Helens, Merseyside; Andrew Robinson, 32, of Yew Bank Lane, Whitehaven; Angela Clark, 52, of Robert Owen Avenue, Cleator Moor; Clint Tinsley, 33, of Ashburn Grove, St Helens.

Another man – 34-year-old Stephen Neill, of Kirkstone Close, Kendal – appeared in court on similar charges on Wednesday.

Yesterday, Roger Joseph Fox pleaded guilty to conspiring with others unknown to supply cocaine, a class A drug, between February 14 2012 and April 7 2012.

Luke Babester pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply cocaine, between January 1 2010 and February 14 2010, and to conspiring to supply the same drug between February 14 2012 and April 7 2012.

He also admitted being concerned in a money laundering operation by allowing money relating to the supply of drugs to pass through Kendal MOT and Service Centre so that vehicles purchased with such money could be registered and insured by the business between August 1 2010 and April 7 2012.

He further admitted converting money made from the supply of drugs from January 1 2010 and April 7 2012.

Martin Smith pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply a quantity of methcathinone or its derivatives, a class B drug, between March 1 and May 22 2012.

Grant Robertson pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply a quantity of methcathinone or its derivatives, between the same dates.

He also admitted possessing 212 counterfeit £1 coins. Michael Britland admitted conspiring to supply cocaine

Andrew Robinson pleaded guilty to possessing the class B drug 4-methylmethylcathinone.

Clint Tinsley admitted conspiring to supply cocaine.

Another man Stephen Neill, 34, of Kirkstone Close, Kendal, had previously pleaded guilty to conspiring with others unknown to supply cocaine, between February 14 2012 and April 7 2012

Angela Clark, 52, of Robert Owen Avenue, Cleator Moor, pleaded not guilty yesterday to possessing the class B drug 4-methyl-N-ethylcathinone with intent to supply it on April 25 2012.

She also denied being concerned, on April 25 2012, in the supply of methcathinone or its derivatives, a class B drug; and possessing a quantity of amphetamine on the same day.

She further denied possessing 212 counterfeit £1 coins. She will be back in court on Tuesday for her case to be considered further.

Steven John Smith was charged with conspiring to supply a quantity of methcathinone or its derivatives, between March 1 and May 22 2012, and conspiring to supply cocaine between April 1 2012 and May 22 2012.

He was in court with the others but did not enter any pleas to the charges he faced.

He will do that on Tuesday.

Those who pleaded guilty were remanded for pre-sentence reports and will be sentenced later.

Judge Paul Batty QC told them: “I am anxious that each of you will know your fate as soon as ever possible.”

He said all sentencing options, including immediate imprisonment, were open.

Robinson, Clark and Martin Smith were allowed bail, but the rest were remanded in custody.

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