Addict whose home became a base for county lines drug network is jailed
PUBLISHED: 17:13 11 September 2018 | UPDATED: 17:24 11 September 2018
A heroin addict whose Norwich home became a base for a county lines drug network has been jailed.
Adrian Read, 48, was caught selling heroin and crack cocaine to an undercover police officer posing as a drug addict.
The officer had been making test purchases in Norwich as part of Operation Granary, which targets the sale of Class A drugs.
Norwich Crown Court heard on Tuesday how Read became involved with a county lines drug gang known as the Pusher network after getting into debt.
Prosecutor Chris Youell said the undercover officer, known as Tommo, met Read after calling a number for the Pusher drug network.
He said: “On November 21, Tommo called the Pusher line and spoke to someone with a London accent.
“He was then directed to the rear of Anglia Square car park.”
Mr Youell said the officer handed over £15 and received two wraps of heroin from Read.
The court heard a second transaction for crack cocaine took place on December 4, near to the Magdalen Gates Primary School, at Bull Close Road.
Mr Youell said they met “within metres” of the school as parents were waiting to collect their children.
A third deal for two wraps of heroin took place in an alleyway off Silver Street on December 5.
Rob Pollington, mitigating, said Read, of Bull Close Road, had been purchasing heroin from “illicit sources” after his methadone prescription stopped.
He then got into debt with the Pusher network when his benefits were ceased.
“They called in the debt and said make your address available to us,” Mr Pollington said.
“He appears to work off his debt by providing them with accommodation and becomes a foot soldier for the network.”
Read, who has three convictions for six motoring offences, pleaded guilty to three counts of supplying Class A drugs.
Judge Anthony Bate jailed him for 30 months.
Also appearing at Norwich Crown Court on Tuesday was Patrick White.
The 41-year-old, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to selling two wraps of heroin to ‘Tommo’ on November 27.
John Farmer, mitigating, said White, who has 67 convictions for 136 offences, had a “minimalistic” role in the network.
He was jailed for 18 months.