Hartlepool man denies drugs plot charge

Teesside Crown Court and combined court centre
Teesside Crown Court and combined court centre

An unemployed man from Hartlepool is among nine men accused of running a major heroin and cocaine trafficking network.

Ryan Maddren is alleged to have arranged to receive half a kilo of heroin from a wholesale supplier in Liverpool on behalf of gang ringleader Carl Hannan.

Detectives found Maddren’s address stored as a destination in the satellite navigation system of a drugs courier’s car, Teesside Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor Andrew Haslam QC said Hannan’s gang worked with fellow drug dealers in Liverpool and Newcastle to bring drugs to the North East.

Mr Haslam said: “What we say is that each of the defendants in the dock, together with others, were involved in a conspiracy to supply those drugs.

“We say Carl Hannan was at the heart, sourcing heroin and cocaine from other groups in the Merseyside area.”The jury heard undercover police tracked the movements of the gang, who used untraceable pay-as-you-go phones and changed numbers regularly to avoid detection.

Outlining the case against Maddren, Mr Haslam said: “Ryan Maddren is unemployed and not in receipt of any benefits.

“He was arrested in August 2016 in a car with two other men, which also contained a kilo of heroin.

“A week later, officers arrested another man who was on his way from Liverpool to Hartlepool.

“They found half a kilo of heroin in his car.

“Maddren’s flat at Mariners Point in Hartlepool was the destination in the car’s satellite navigation system.

“The prosecution case is Maddren had arranged to accept the heroin on behalf of Hannan.”

Police observed three Liverpool men drive to Hartlepool to meet one of the other defendants.

“They drove straight back,” said Mr Haslam.

“We say that meeting was all about making arrangements for the delivery of heroin the following day.”

Maddren, 23, of Mariners Point, Hartlepool, denies conspiracy to supply class A drugs between December 2015 and October 2016.

The following deny the same charge: Carl Hannan, 34, of Caithness Road, Normanby. David Butler, 47, of Wrensfield Road, Stockton. Robert Hutchinson, 31 of Hutton Road, Eston.

Mark Robinson, 37, of Oxford Street, Middlesbrough, Simon Robinson, 33, of Oriel Close, Middlesbrough. Gordon McKenzie, 33, formerly of Teessville, Middlesbrough.

Colin McNally, 46, from Newburn, Newcastle, and Kevin McCulley, 39, from Croxteth, Liverpool.

The trial is expected to take several weeks.