Judge calls for drugs probe

A judge called for an investigation in to the source of drugs being brought to Norwich from London after dealing with “more and more” cases of drugs being trafficked from the capital.

A judge called for an investigation in to the source of drugs being brought to Norwich from London after dealing with “more and more” cases of drugs being trafficked from the capital.

Judge Peter Jacobs' comments came as he sentenced a drug addict who couriered £3,000 worth of diamorphine from London to sell in the city to two and half years in prison.

Ian Hawthorne, 46, was arrested after police executed a warrant at his home at Wellington Gardens, Norwich, and took him to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital because they suspected he was carrying drugs.

Tests discovered he had more than an ounce of diamorphine sealed in bags and stashed inside his body.

Hawthorne, who has a long standing drug addiction to heroin, appeared at Norwich Crown Court for sentence after admitting possession with intent to supply on February 13.

During the hearing, the judge commented to prosecutor Andrew Oliver: “We seem to be hearing more and more cases of drugs coming in from London either couriered in by locals but normally couriered in by people from London, some of whom pass it on to locals, and some of whom start selling it themselves. But we never ever seem to get to the source of the sale in London.

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“Are there investigations to see who was peddling? We never seem to get to the source of supply in London.”

Mr Oliver said that Hawthorne would not divulge who he had got the drugs from and prosecutions for drug offences in London would not necessarily come to their attention because they would be dealt with in the capital.

John Hunt, defending, said: “This is the first time he has involved himself in the selling of drugs, with the payment being in the form of heroin for himself.

“He did it partly in fear and partly because he was going to be paid in drugs.”

He added that for the last month his client had shown motivation to change by attending drugs tests, which had all proved negative, and was having counselling.

Sentencing Hawthorne, Judge Jacobs said: “The effect of class A drugs in Norwich is well known - it causes misery, and crime and in some cases death, and you of all people should know better.

“The amount of drugs you were dealing with was just too much, the message has to go out that people who are bringing drugs in to this area have to go to prison.

“It's the only way to try to get the message out and to try and stem the tide.”

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