Heroin dealers caged

Brazell and Owens
Brazell and Owens

TWO heroin dealers who were caught in a drugs bust have been caged for a total of eight years.

John Brazell and Sharlene Owens, both 32, peddled the class A drug in Hartlepool before they were arrested in a police swoop.

Officers swooped on Brazell’s home in Borrowdale Street, Hartlepool, and caught him desperately trying to get rid of the heroin down the sink.

But traces of the drug were found on worktops and digital scales in the house, along with £620 in cash from previous deals.

The pair denied they were dealers, but were found guilty of possessing a class A drug with intent to supply and possessing criminal property after a trial at l Turn to Page 5

Teesside Crown Court in July.

They were each jailed for four years when they were sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court.

Police raided Brazell’s home on Friday, January 28.

Brazell was standing at the sink when officers burst in, and Owens was lying on a couch in the front room.

Brazell had £520 in cash in his trouser pocket, and Owens had £100 in her handbag.

Mobile phone text messages sent by Brazell and Owens revealed them asking for drugs in code from their suppliers.

A message sent from a phone belonging to Owens, of Blakelock Gardens, Hartlepool, said “we could be selling plenty.”

The pair claimed they were simply users of the drug, and that the texts referred to selling cigarettes.

Detective Sergeant Daryll Tomlinson, from Hartlepool’s Dedicated Drug Unit, said: “These sentences are very encouraging and will hopefully send out a message to local dealers that this activity will not be tolerated.

“We will continue to target Class A drug dealers who cause persistent anti-social problems within the community for their own financial gain.”