Cocaine dealer who complained about poor sales jailed for eight years

A cocaine dealer who complained in text messages that his sales were poor after Christmas has been sentenced to eight years at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court.

Nathan Henshall was one of five men in an organised crime group sentenced to a total of 21 years for offences relating to the supply of drugs in the Stoke-on-Trent area.

The other members were 29 year-old Rod Boyd of St Margarets Court in Draycott; 30 year-old Michael Gerrity of Wellfield Road in Stoke-on-Trent; Ashley Pace aged 28, of Dorchester Walk in Stoke-on-Trent; and John Jeffers who's 59, of Greenway Close in Liverpool.

They were charged with conspiracy to supply Class A and Class B drugs including cocaine, amphetamine and Mkat. The men were part of an organised crime group operating in the Stoke-on-Trent and Liverpool areas.

The organiser of the supply was 26 year-old Nathan Henshall of Frodingham Road in Stoke-on-Trent, who was responsible for sourcing large quantities of drugs from Merseyside on multiple occasions.

He subsequently became responsible for controlling other members of the Crime Group who collected, cut up and distributed the drugs on his behalf.

Detectives from Staffordshire Police’s Major and Organised Crime investigations department gathered intelligence and in January 2015 officers stopped a car being driven by Ashley Pace on the A500 in Stoke-on-Trent and discovered 252 grams of cocaine of high purity with a street value of more than £20,000.

The search also uncovered 2kg of amphetamines with a street value of between £2,200 and £6,700.

Following Pace’s arrest the group switched their activity so that drugs were couriered from Liverpool to Stoke via the rail network.

In June 2017 officers searched Liverpool-based John Jeffers at Stoke railway station and found £5,990 in cash. Michael Gerrity, who drove away, was stopped a short distance from the railway station and found in possession of around £6,000 worth of cocaine.

Text messages were exchanged between Henshall and other members of the group in which delivery times were agreed.

In one text sent on 10 January 2015 Henshall agreed that sales of drugs were slow after Christmas.

‘Yeah it will go slow after New Year bro, always does…sold hardly **** all last night

  • Henshall was sentenced to 8 years.
  • Boyd was given 3 years.
  • Gerrity received a sentence of 3 years 6 months. 
  • Pace was sentenced to 4 years 6 months. 
  • Jeffers was given 2 years 3 months.

Detective Inspector Lesley Fowler, of Staffordshire Police, said: "This was a very complex case and it took months to put together the case against these men. Officers have been involved in a great deal of detailed work.

"Staffordshire Police takes its duty to protect the public very seriously and will not hesitate to tackle those who try to profit from dealing drugs. This group was highly organised and, despite complaining of poor sales after Christmas, they were selling large quantities of drugs. They were peddling misery on the streets of Staffordshire and I'm glad they are being punished for their crimes.”

Judge Paul Glenn commended the investigation by Staffordshire Police’s Major and Organised Crime investigations department.

“This thorough investigation has removed some drug dealers from the streets of Stoke-on-Trent,” he said.

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