Jailed: Drug trafficker managed crack cocaine and heroin enterprise
A young drug trafficker who managed a criminal enterprise from the Shrewsbury home of a vulnerable person after forcing his way in has been locked up.
Thomas Holloway and sidekick Roshaun Sinclair used the home as a base for splitting and distributing drugs, known as cuckooing, a court heard.
Holloway, aged 20, of Rowley Regis, was sentenced to five years custody for possessing crack cocaine and heroin with the intent to supply and the possession of criminal property.
Meanwhile criminology student Roshaun Sinclair, 19, from West Bromwich, was handed two years and four months in prison for possessing crack cocaine and heroin with the intent to supply.
Police received a tip-off and searched a premises in Frankwell, Shrewsbury, where they caught the pair among the drugs, a number of mobiles and knives on January 19.
Miss Joanne Barker, prosecuting, said that police found 2.1g of cocaine with a street value of £300, 5.8g of heroin with a value of £580 and five packages of cocaine with an estimated value of £1,410.
Sinclair, of Normans Drive, was found with the fingers of his right hand wrapped in cling film, a mobile phone on him and £25 cash. While Holloway, of Harper Close, had two mobile phones and £1,250 in cash.
Miss Barker told Shrewsbury Crown Court: “Drug dealers have travelled from the Wolverhampton and Birmingham areas to the Shrewsbury community to sell drugs and set themselves up and latch onto local users and dealers.”
Both defendants pleaded guilty when they appeared at crown court.
Miss Barker said the phones revealed significant evidence, with pictures of Mr Holloway holding cash, and images of a gun and knife on a table.
“Evidence included Mr Holloway recruiting or using others in the distribution of the drugs,” Miss Barker added.
Mr Brendan Reedy, on behalf of Sinclair, said this was the first and only day he was involved with drugs.
He said: “He left school with 12 GCSEs and is now going a criminology course and may be able to go to university if he finishes it.
“He’s a member of a semi-professional football team. This is clearly out of character for him.”
Mr Paul Smith, on behalf of Holloway, said his parents are “distraught” at how he has placed himself in this situation.
Judge Peter Barrie said: “This case concerns an enterprise to establish in Shrewsbury an outpost to deal Class A drugs run from Birmingham.
“There are of course others up the chain who have an even greater responsibility than you do, but there’s no way you can have been involved without understanding the scale of what you were getting involved in.”
Judge Barrie also made an order for the forfeiture and destruction of all the paraphernalia.