Drug gang jailed for 11 years

Stephen Sumner, Jason Millington, James Gardner and James Somers (below) who were jailed after �130,000 of cannabis was found by police (above).

Stephen Sumner, Jason Millington, James Gardner and James Somers (below) who were jailed after �130,000 of cannabis was found by police (above).

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Four members of a drugs gang caught after a police operation which seized almost £130,000 of cannabis have been jailed for more than 11 years.

The men, from Fleetwood and Hambleton, were jailed by a judge at Preston Crown Court for supplying and producing the Class B drug.

Stephen Sumner

Stephen Sumner

They were jailed for a total of 11 and a half years.

Stephen Sumner, 28, of Duddon Avenue, Fleetwood, was sentenced to three years and six months after pleading guilty to conspiring to produce and supply cannabis.

James Gardner, 29, of Cutts Lane, Hambleton, was sentenced to two years after pleading guilty to conspiring to produce and supply cannabis.

James Somers, 42 of Toronto Avenue, Fleetwood, was sentenced to three years and six months after he was found guilty of conspiring to produce and supply cannabis following a trial. And Jason Millington, 41, of Harris Street, Fleetwood, was sentenced to two years, six months after pleading guilty to conspiring to produce and supply cannabis.

Jason Millington

Jason Millington

The sentencing followed a major operation, codenamed Hertha, which was aimed at tackling cannabis production across Blackpool over a three week period in August 2012.

As part of the operation, five properties were searched and cannabis with a value of £127,860 was recovered along with sophisticated cannabis cultivation equipment.

Speaking after the sentencing Det Con Stu Peall, of Lancashire Police, said: “We are very satisfied with the sentence handed out and hope it acts as a warning to other people who are involved in producing cannabis, that it will not be tolerated.

“These men were involved in a very large organised operation and I am pleased that we have been able to put a stop to it.

James Gardner

James Gardner

“Cannabis production on this scale brings misery to the people living in the area and hopefully now these men are behind bars, the communities can move forward.

“It is only with the help of the public that we are able to catch drug dealers and bring them to justice so I would

urge anybody with information to contact us on the 101 number.”

As well as the four men jailed, three other defendants also appeared for similar drugs offences.

James Somers

James Somers

Joshua Lambert, 24 of Pauls Lane, Hambleton was sentenced to 36 weeks suspended for two years and 50 hours community service after pleading guilty to conspiring to produce and supply cannabis and possession of cocaine.

Kurt Ramsbottom, 25, of Northway, Fleetwood was sentenced to 32 weeks suspended for two years and 50 hours community service after pleading guilty to conspiring to produce and supply cannabis and possession with intent to supply cannabis.

Steven Atkinson, 28, of Heathfield Road, Fleetwood was sentenced to 16 weeks suspended for two years and 50 hours community service after pleading guilty to conspiring to produce and supply cannabis.

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