Drug dealers arrested in Eastbourne in raids are sentenced

FIFTEEN class A drug dealers arrested in Eastbourne in raids last December have been sentenced to a total of 30 years’ imprisonment.

Operation Colne was a joint operation between Sussex Police and British Transport Police (BTP) and spanned a two-week period, with 35 people in Eastbourne and Hastings arrested.

The most recent to be sentenced was Barry Didsbury, 35, from Eastbourne, who was arrested in Liverpool in June.

Didsbury appeared before Lewes Crown Court earlier this month and was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for supplying crack cocaine and heroin to undercover police officers.

Others who pleaded guilty to the supply of class A drugs and appeared before Eastbourne Magistrates’ Court include Zac James, 34, of Cavalry Crescent, sentenced in May to three years imprisonment for conspiracy to rob and offering to supply class A drugs.

Gary Clarke, 47, of Jevington Gardens, and Greg Nicholls, 37, of Percival Road, were both sentenced in March and given three and half years, Kevin Crunden, 49, of Norway Road, was jailed for three and a half years in February while James Jason King, 39, of Carlisle Road,, was sentenced in March to three years imprisonment.

Mark Ainsworth, 52, of Lushington Lane, was sentenced in March to two and half years, Daniel Santos, 36, of Winchcombe Road, was given a one-and-a-half year term in March and Sarah Chollerton, 32, of no fixed address, was sentenced to two and half years in February.

Jemma Bradshaw, 31, of no fixed address, who was found guilty after a two-day trial at Brighton Crown Court in February, was given two years’ imprisonment, while a one-year term was given to Emma Crowhurst, 32, of Langney Rise.

Several were given non-custodial sentences. John Rowland, 42, of Seaside, was sentenced in April and received a community sentence and a six month curfew order, Samantha Bradley, 26, of no fixed address, was given a 12-month community order, with 12 months supervision from probation, in March, Katie Williams, 22, of Carlisle Road, sentenced in March, was given a nine month community sentence and drug rehabilitation programme and James Frew, 32, of no fixed address, was given an 18 month community sentence and drug treatment programme in April.

Detective Inspector Paul Phelps of Eastbourne CID said, “These results send out a strong message to the local community that we will not tolerate drug dealing and drug supply in Eastbourne.

“Operation Colne involved Sussex Police working with BTP and gathering intelligence on a large number of drug dealers across East Sussex since January 2010 as part of the East Sussex Drugs Reduction Initiative.

“As a result of this work, evidence was collated against key individuals who were involved in the supply of class A drugs.”

If you suspect someone is dealing drugs in your area please call Sussex Police on 0845 60 70 999 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.