More county lines successes

Alert message sent 22/10/2021 16:15:00

Information sent on behalf of Wiltshire Police

Three county lines drug dealers have been sentenced to a total of more than 10-years in prison following investigations by Wiltshire Police’s dedicated response unit to serious and organised crime. 

The results are in addition to the good work by the dedicated Fortitude Team and partners during two weeks of activity this month (October) as part of a nationwide county lines intensification period. 

The sentencing of these three separate county lines cases - all at Swindon Crown Court - are as follows: 

1. Jose Rasgado, aged 36,from North Finchley, London sentenced to 30 months in prison after pleading guilty to Possession with intent to supply (PWITS) Class A crack cocaine and heroin. 

Rasgado was stopped as the front seat passenger in a vehicle whilst on Queens Drive, Swindon on 10 October 2019.  He attempted to conceal a package of Class A drugs whilst in a police vehicle but was caught doing so by CCTV from within the cabin.  

This was the result of a proactive investigation into county lines dealing from Gloucester to Swindon. 

PC Emma Rice, from the Fortitude Team, said:  “I am pleased that a custodial sentence has been handed to Rasgado - this reflects the severity of his actions and the impact this could have on many vulnerable people. 

“We are committed to tackling county lines and will continue to target those involved in the supply of Class A drugs within our communities.”

2. Darnell Brown, aged 20, from Handsworth, Birmingham sentenced to 44 months in prison after pleading guilty to PWITS Class A crack cocaine and heroin.  

Brown was stopped as the front seat passenger in a vehicle on Turner Street, Swindon on the 3 August 2021.  He was seen to  conceal a package of drugs which was  later recovered in a strip search.  He was remanded and later pleaded guilty to PWITS Class A and was sentenced on 5 October 2021. 

PC Emma Rice added:  “This was the result of a proactive investigation into county lines dealing from Birmingham to Swindon. 

“These sorts of groups not only peddle illegal drugs, which cause serious misery for vulnerable addicts and users, but also bring with them the associated exploitation, anti-social behaviour and violence.” 

3. Eurico Tavares, aged 26, from Sandgate, Swindon sentenced to five years in prison after admitting to possessing a firearm and being concerned in the supply of crack cocaine and heroin. 

Tavares was responsible for supplying crack cocaine and heroin over a period of time, culminating in an incident in May 2021 where during an altercation in the Manchester Road area of Swindon he was seen carrying a handgun in his waist band.  

As a result he was arrested a short time later at his home address.  During the search of the property officers found a BB gun and recovered a mobile phone used to run a local drugs line; they also discovered a quantity of Class A drugs - heroin and crack cocaine - and £5,000 in folded bank notes.  

PC Chris Hemns, from the Fortitude Team, said: “We welcome the sentencing as it reflects the harm caused by the defendant.  From the ensuing investigation, we were able to demonstrate that Tavares ran a busy and lucrative drugs line. 

“This was an in-depth investigation where our Fortitude Team worked tirelessly to gather evidence of his continued involvement in Class A drug supply, leaving him with no option but to plead guilty to the offences. 

“We always encourage the public to report any suspicious activity to police and hope the sentence passed reassures our communities that robust action will be taken against those identified as responsible.” 

Images of the defendants can be found here. 
Message sent by
Mark Jones (Police, Media Officer, Wiltshire)

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