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Duo jailed for drugs supply crimes after police vehicle rammed in Kendal

Billy Johnson and Stephen Ayrey

TWO men have been sentenced for heroin and crack cocaine supply crimes which came to light after a police vehicle was rammed in Kendal.

Carlisle Crown Court heard how Billy John Carl Johnson, 27, and 26-year-old Stephen Ayrey were inside a stolen Renault Scenic which came to the attention of police in the Kirkland area just before noon on December 7.

As PCs approached the Renault and boxed it in, driver Johnson revved the engine and repeatedly rammed the police vehicle – causing £15,000 damage – in a bid to escape, and collided with another vehicle nearby before speeding off, almost hitting a passing cyclist.

After dangerous manoeuvres which prompted a member of the public to call 999, both men fled and discarded jackets but were later linked to the Renault by DNA evidence.

After sniffer dogs were summoned, the jackets and almost £1,000 worth of class A heroin and crack cocaine was recovered, some of the latter having been hidden in a dry stone wall.

Both Johnson and Ayrey later admitted possessing both heroin and crack cocaine with intent to supply. Johnson also pleaded guilty to dangerous driving.

They were sentenced this morning (FRI), when Judge James Adkin observed there was a feature of “county lines drug dealing” to the men’s offending.

Johnson, of Reginald Street, Eccles, Manchester, was jailed for 45 months, and Ayrey, of The Gardens, Eccles, Manchester, for 40 months.

Police Constable Christopher Appleyard said: “Today’s sentencing sends a clear message to those considering becoming involved in county line drug dealing; Kendal is not a soft touch, we will catch you, you will go to jail.

“We will continue to proactively target county lines drugs networks and take action against those suspected of bringing drugs into Cumbria.

“We would urge anyone with information on drug supply to contact us on 101.”

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