STREET dealers and their suppliers have been sentenced to almost 100 years behind bars after the largest police operation to get drugs off the city streets in more than a decade.
Dawn raids were carried out at more than 87 homes in Wakefield, Castleford, Normanton and Leeds last Spring to target street dealers and their suppliers. And Operation Elmpond has seen a total of 41 men and women sentenced to 90 years and eight months in jail for trafficking offences, including the supply of crack cocaine and heroin.
Detective Inspector Jon Key of Protective Services (Crime) said: “The conviction of the final defendant at court this week represents a milestone in what has been a long running investigation to take drugs off our streets and put the people dealing them behind bars.
“The past 12 months have seen the courts hand some significant prison sentences to those who thought it was acceptable to deal class A drugs including crack and heroin on our streets.”
The operation finished with a final sentencing at Leeds Crown Court on Wednesday. Craig Moon, 34, of Simpsons Lane, Knottingley, pleaded guilty to drug offences and was given four years in prison.
Of the 41 people convicted, 21 received immediate prison sentences and 19 were given suspended terms.
Chief Superintendent Mabs Hussain, district commander for Wakefield Police, said work was ongoing to take drugs off the streets.
He said: “This has truly been a major operation to tackle drug dealers operating in our communities. I want to commend the hard work of officers who took part and also the members of the public who contacted us with intelligence.
“Despite these many convictions there is much more work to be done and Wakefield detectives are progressing investigations against a number of suspects following several high profile seizures so far in 2016.”
Anyone with any information should contact police on 101.