Drug dealer jailed after arrest in Vange

A drug dealer caught with cocaine and more than £1,000 in cash has been jailed for nearly three years.

Basildon Crown Court heard now officers from the South Operation Raptor team were patrolling in Ravenscourt Drive, Vange on September 9 this year when they became suspicious of a van.

The officers watched the driver of the van being involved in two suspected drug deals.

As they approached 50-year-old Daren Ellis, who was in the driver’s seat, attempted to drive off. The vehicle was eventually boxed in by officers and they searched Ellis and the van.

Inside they found £1,123 in cash in the centre console and Ellis of Argent Street, Grays was found to have three wraps of the Class A drug cocaine and a mobile phone linked to drug supply.

Ellis was arrested, charged and pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply a Class A drug. He was jailed for 32 months.

Following the sentencing investigating officer PC Adam Blackwell of the South Operation Raptor team said: “There is no doubt from the drugs, cash and phone found in the car used by Ellis that he was clearly involved in the supply of cocaine.

“Unfortunately for Ellis he wasn’t banking on the fact that while he was plying his illegal drugs, Operation Raptor were ready, watching and waiting and we took our opportunity to arrest him.

“Whilst people like him think they can sell drugs on the streets of Essex, Operation Raptor will be there to ensure they can’t and we will arrest them and put them behind bars.”

Essex Police set up Operation Raptor teams in the North, South and West of the county to tackle drug and gang-related crime.

If you have information about drug or gang-related crime in your community contact Essex Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Ellis was sentenced at Basildon Crown Court on Thursday October 17.

Mick Ferris

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