A man concerned in the supply of cocaine has been jailed after being convicted based on evidence from his mobile phone.
Officers stopped a vehicle being driven by Glen Hodgins of Ashdown Close, St Leonards on February 16th, 2018, on the A21 at Flimwell. He told officers he had been shopping at Bluewater and was now on his way home to Hastings.
However, officers noticed a smell of cannabis coming from inside the vehicle and a search was carried out. A plastic laundry bag was found in the boot containing three large plastic vacuum bags, each filled with herbal cannabis. In total, 3kg of cannabis was found.
Officers arrested Hodgins and continued their investigations, seizing a black iPhone from the driver’s door pocket of the vehicle and a Samsung mobile phone from his home address, where £1,600 in cash was also found.
Examinations were conducted on the phones and extensive messaging relating to the distribution and sale of cocaine was found.
It was on this evidence that Hodgins was found guilty of being concerned in the supply of cocaine – despite no Class A drugs being found in his vehicle. He was convicted at Brighton Crown Court on January 14th following a three-day trial.
Hodgins, 32, a carpenter, was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment for being concerned in the supply of a Class A drug (cocaine).
He pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply a Class B drug (cannabis) and was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment to run concurrently.
He was also sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment, to run concurrently, for possessing criminal property – namely £1,600 cash.
Chief Inspector Sarah Godley, district commander for Hastings and Rother, said: “This lengthy sentence positively reflects the individual’s involvement in drug dealing and the funds he obtained.
“It also shows that a person does not necessarily need to be in possession of a substance to be convicted – in this case cocaine – and that evidence found on devices like mobile phones can be sufficient.
“I commend the officers for all their hard work in this investigation, and for bringing an offender to justice. We will continue to target drug dealers as part of our efforts to make our communities a safer place for all.”
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