Drug dealers who were arrested when armed police brought the A47 to a halt in Peterborough have been jailed for a total of more than eight years.
Ryan Gerald and Serkan Mengene were involved in supplying highly addictive heroin and crack cocaine to vulnerable addicts in Peterborough.
But they were stopped when officers armed with guns dramatically pulled their car over as it travelled on the A47 near Fulbridge Road in January.
Armed officers then raided Menegene's home in Southfields Drive in Peterborough , where they found 'a substantial' amount of both drugs hidden in a child's push chair. They also found thousands of pounds in cash hidden in a bedroom. Officers also found debt lists and seized a mobile phone belonging to Gerald.
Today Gerald was jailed for just under fiver years and eight months, while Mengene was locked up for three years after they admitted their role in the drugs organisation at Peterborough Crown Court.
Edward Renvoize, prosecuting, told the court: "On January 9 police carried out a top on the A47. The two men were arrested and a search was carried out at Southfields Drive.
They found a quantity of class A drugs hidden in a push chair. There were 155 wraps of heroin, with a street value of £1,550, and 519 wraps of crack cocaine, with a street value of £5,190.
The also found cash - £700 in a bedside cabinet, and £4,690 in another drawer.
"Officers also recovered a phone belonging to Gerald.
"There was a message which read 'I'm on. Got both for 25 fat deals.' The exact same message had been sent 61 times in a few days."
Judge Matthew Lowe said compared to other street dealing organisations in Peterborough, the amount of drugs and cash found made it a 'significant' operation.
Mengene, first came to the attention of police when officers analysed his phone data while investigating a possible firearms offence.
Data revealed his phone’s location between 3 and 9 January this year. His phone was traced to the Orton area of Peterborough from 3 January and received numerous calls during this time – together with another phone.
Mengene then left the county for London but was arrested on outstanding matters when he tried to leave the country on 5 January.
Despite this, the mobile linked to him stayed in the Orton area of Peterborough and the other phone moved around Peterborough and Spalding.
On 7 January, the day Mengene was released on bail, cell site analysis revealed the phones to be together again.
Officers believed Mengene, who has previous convictions for drug offences, to be accompanying others to various locations across Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire in order to deal drugs.
Cell site analysis on 8 January traced the two numbers to Southfields Drive – the home of Mengene – before moving together to Wisbech, Kings Lynn, Lincoln and then back to Peterborough.
The next day, at about 11.45am, officers spotted Mengene and Gerald leave the former’s home in Southfields Drive.
The pair met up with a third man and entered the Co-op, in Lawson Avenue, before calling a taxi driver and asking him for a favour.
The taxi driver picked up the three men in his Vauxhall Insignia and drove them to Spalding, stopping so they could visit various locations in Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire on the journey. The third man was then dropped off.
However, the taxi was stopped on the A47 during its return journey by armed police after concerns the men could have a firearm.
The court was told when they were interviewed, Gerald told police a few details about his movements that day, but made no comment to other questions, while Mengene made no comment to any questions.
Mr Renvoize said Gerald's role was to advertise the drugs for sale on the streets of Peterborough, and the 26-year-old pleaded guilty to two counts of being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs, a 'lesser' offence than the two counts of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs Mengene (27) admitted.
However, while Mengene, whose address was given as London Road, Peterborough, had no relevant previous convictions for drugs offences, the court was told Gerald had a number of serious convictions in his past.
In April 2014 he was jailed to two years in prison for possession with intent to supply heroin and crack cocaine, while in December 2016 he was given a 45 month sentence for being concerned in the supply of crack cocaine and heroin. He has also been jailed for robbery and possession of weapons in the past.
The court heard that his two previous convictions for supply of drugs, along with his latest conviction meant he was a 'three striker' - meaning the starting point for his sentence was seven years.
Defending, John Farmer tried to convince Judge Matthew Lowe it would be 'unjust' to impose the seven years.
He said: "His role was essentially limited to marketing,
"He was gaining no benefit from it. It is always good news to be on favourable terms with some people. He thought he would get some benefit from it in the future, but he was, to use a colloquialism, gaining Brownie points.'
But Judge Lowe rejected the submissions, and said: "Although he is only 26 he has accumulated a significant number of very serious offences. This is his third conviction for a drugs supply offence. Within a really short period of his release hi is prepared to involve himself again in the supply of Class A drugs."
Gerald, whose address was given as Holbrook Close, Enfield, Middlesex was given a 20 per cent discount from his sentence for his guilty plea, meaning he received a total term of 2,045 days on each count, to be served concurrently.
Francesca Kirby, defending Mengene, said her client had pleaded guilty at an early stage, and had no previous convictions for drug offences.
She said: "He has two young children. This is the first time he has been to prison, and he won't be back again. There is remorse shown through his guilty plea."
Judge Lowe said the sentence for Mengene's sentence was four years, which was reduced by 25 per cent to reflect his guilty plea. He was given a three year sentence on each count, to be served concurrently.
DC Mat Belfitt, who investigated, said: “Cell site analysis enabled us to link both defendants to these drugs offences and this sentence serves as a warning to those who think they’re above the law or can’t be traced.
“We’re working hard to combat drug dealing and bring people before the courts who take advantage of those trapped in addiction.”
Both men were told they would be released from their sentence at about the half way point.
The drugs were ordered to be destroyed, and a proceeds of crime hearing will take place later this year.