Drug dealers sentenced following County Lines crackdown in Ellesmere Port

Two men who were arrested as part of a crackdown on county lines drug dealing in Ellesmere Port have been sentenced.

John Hodgin of Liverpool was sentenced to four years in prison at Chester Crown Court on Friday 12 May.

Christopher Tarran of Ellesmere Port appeared at Chester Crown Court on Wednesday 19 July, where he was sentenced to two years in prison suspended for 18 months.

The pair had both previously pleaded guilty to two counts of being concerned in the supply of class A drugs (heroin and crack cocaine).

The case against the pair began in April 2022 when detectives received intelligence that Hodgin was the ringleader of a county lines drugs gang which was operating in the area.

After receiving the information, officers discovered that he had been frequenting an address in Neston. A warrant was conducted at the address on Wednesday 12 April and Hodgin was located in the bathroom attempting to flush a mobile phone down the toilet.

The 23-year-old was arrested at the scene and subsequent analysis of the phone revealed that it was a graft phone that he was using to sell illegal drugs.

Messages from the phone, also revealed that Hodgin was employing Christopher Tarran as a street dealer in Ellesmere Port.

44-year-old Tarran was subsequently arrested on Friday 14 April after he was stopped by plain-clothed officers on Church Street, Ellesmere Port.

Following his arrest, Tarran admitted being in possession of illegal drugs and when searching him officers discovered 53 £10 wraps of heroin, 122 £10 deals of crack cocaine, £160 cash and a mobile phone.

Subsequent analysis of the mobile phone seized revealed that it was being used as a burner phone to sell illegal drugs.

The pair were both subsequently charged with two counts of being concerned in the supply of class A drugs (heroin and crack cocaine).

Following the sentencing Detective Constable Roy Wellings, of Ellesmere Port CID, said, “This result demonstrates our efforts to ensure those who deal drugs in our communities are caught and brought to justice.

“The damage that illegal drugs can cause to individuals and communities is well known and we are committed doing everything in our power to ensure those responsible are put before the courts.

“Through our enquiries, it was clear that both Hodgin and Tarran played a key role in the supply of class A drugs in the Ellesmere Port area.

“Thankfully, as a result of all of the evidence we gathered during our investigation, their criminal actions have now been brought to a stop.

“I urge anyone with any information about suspected drug-related activity in the Ellesmere Port area to get in touch.”

You can report suspected drug dealing to Cheshire Constabulary online at https://www.cheshire.police.uk/ro/report or by calling 101.

Information can also be reported anonymously, via Crimestoppers, on 0800 555 111 or at https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/forms/give-information-anonymously 

Image: Cheshire Constabulary/John Hodgin

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