18 months for teen drug dealers

TWO east London teenagers are today starting 18 months in detention after being found guilty of drug-dealing and assaulting a police officer in Ipswich.

TWO east London teenagers are today starting 18 months in detention after being found guilty of drug-dealing and assaulting a police officer in Ipswich.

The 15 and 16 year olds cannot be named for legal reasons after The Evening Star failed to overturn an order banning their identification because they are still juveniles.

At an earlier court hearing the two boys had been found guilty of possessing class A drugs with intent to supply and assaulting a police officer in Foxhall Road, Ipswich, on January 29 this year. They had both denied both charges.

Recorder Rupert Overbury sentenced both of them to a detention and training order for 18 months on each offence, to be served concurrently. He told both that they could expect to be in detention for nine months and then be under supervision for a further nine months after their release.

The 15-year-old is already in custody serving a six-month sentence for theft and the latest sentence will be served consecutively to that.

During the earlier court hearing a jury had heard that the two youngsters had travelled to Ipswich by train from Stratford, near London, a week before they were arrested and mobile phone records indicated that they had ordered taxis to travel around the town in the days leading up to their arrest.

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Recorder Overbury told them: “This indicates to me that you had quite a sophisticated operation running here and this court takes this kind of activity very seriously - whatever your age.”

On the day of their arrest they had assaulted a police constable, leaving him with a cut to the face from which he has now made a complete recovery.

A third youth was seen nearby with a backpack which was later found abandoned containing more than £1,300. Recorder Overbury ordered that this money, together with other change found on the youths should be forfeited as the proceeds of drug dealing.

He told the defendants: “I have taken into account your youth, but these offences are so serious that there is no alternative to an immediate custodial sentence.”

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