The Scarborough News

Drugs gang leaders jailed

Group recruited children and peddled crack cocaine and heroin in the town

- By Court Reporter newsdesk@jpimedia.co.uk @thescarbor­onews

Ringleader­s of a Scarboroug­h drugs gang who used children to do their running have been jailed.

The three men who were involved in peddling heroin and crack cocaine on the streets of Scarboroug­h and who plagued the Barrowclif­f estate were sentenced to prison at York Crown Court.

Bradley Mark Taylor, 21, of no fixed address but previously of Prospect Crescent; Alfie Damien Bailey, 20, of Maple Drive; and Benjamin Freer, 25, of Seamer Road, all pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply heroin and crack cocaine.

Taylor was jailed for four and a half years. Bailey, who also pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply heroin, crack cocaine, MDMA and cannabis, was jailed for 42 months. Freer was sentenced to 43 months.

A fourth man, Kyle Blades

Wilkinson, of Colescliff­e Road, also admitted conspiracy to supply heroin and crack cocaine. He received a 15-month sentence, suspended for two years.

Police said the group’s methods mirrored those used by so-called “county lines” drug dealers from out of the area, from recruiting children to do their running to advertisin­g through a deal line.

But in this case, they targeted their home town, frequentin­g the Barrowclif­f estate and selling to Scarboroug­h drug users.

Their deal line, known as the “P” line, was operating in Scarboroug­h using different numbers for different, slightly overlappin­g, periods throughout 2020.

The line was operated primarily by Taylor, although in August and September the line was manned by BladesWilk­inson, and in October and November by Bailey.

Drugs including heroin and crack cocaine were regularly advertised for sale in Scarboroug­h through mass text messaging.

Another man, Scott Simpson,

31, of Longwestga­te, pleaded guilty to allowing the group to use his flat to deal the drugs. He received a two-year community order.

Det Con Darrel Temple, of Scarboroug­h CID, said Taylor, Freer, Bailey and BladesWilk­inson were “found to be exploiting young, impression­able males from the local area to conduct tasks such as topping up deal phones and acting as street runners,” he added.

“Taylor, Freer and Bailey were shown to be acting in a lead role in orchestrat­ing the operation with Blades-Wilkinson in a role below them taking direction on the ground.

“The investigat­ion shows that it is not only gangs from outside of Scarboroug­h that prey on the weak and vulnerable by using their addiction to make money for themselves, but also those local to Scarboroug­h.”

Conor Quinn, for Taylor, said his client started drugdealin­g after losing his job.

Richard Barradell, for Bailey, said his client had joined the conspiracy to pay for his own drug addiction.

Ian Whitehurst, for Freer, said the father-of-one, of Seamer Road, started dealing because he had lost his job and was in debt.

Graham Parkin, for BladesWilk­inson, said his client was a “vulnerable, highly-suggestibl­e” young man who had been “exploited” by others.

Fiona Clancy, for Simpson, said her client, who had mental-health issues, had been “intimidate­d” by the others.

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 ??  ?? From left: Benjamin Freer, Bradley Taylor and Alfie Bailey.
From left: Benjamin Freer, Bradley Taylor and Alfie Bailey.

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