A DEBT-laden man sent to Carlisle to regain addicts’ phone numbers after a criminal gang member “swallowed” a crucial contacts list has been jailed.
Cocaine user Jack Thomas Brian Henstock racked up arrears, and was ordered by crooks to travel from his home city of Manchester to Cumbria in January.
Henstock, 28, was seen by police approaching two known drug users in the Botcherby area of Carlisle, and was arrested after trying to run off. He later admitted being concerned in the supply of both heroin and crack cocaine.
It emerged he was told to visit Carlisle and collect the phone numbers of addicts by members of an organised crime group seeking to peddle the class A substances as part of a county lines enterprise.
He had submitted a written basis for his guilty pleas which outlined the precise nature of his illegal activity, Carlisle Crown Court heard.
“His task was to repopulate the phone contacts for the criminal organisation’s customer base of addicts,” the document stated. “The organisation had lost its contacts due to someone swallowing a SIM card to avoid detection by police.”
Henstock, of Grimshaw Lane, Middleton, was jailed for three years by Judge Peter Davies, who said his illegal activity meant more addicts would be indebted to “these cruel Manchester drug dealers”.
“If it wasn’t for you, people like them wouldn’t be able to operate, and they wouldn’t be able to make the significant profits they do make,” Judge Davies told him. “You were performing a significant and essential function in my view.”