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Barrow drug dealing duo jailed

A couple who acted as street dealers, for multiple city based illegal drug dealers, have today (8th August) been jailed.

  • Michelle Marsden, 32 and Andrew Finley, 50, both of Highfield Road, Barrow, plead guilty to possession with intent to supply Class A drugs. They were sentenced at Preston Crown Court.

  • Finley received a custodial sentence of six years and six months (six years for drugs offences and six months for theft offences).

This investigation involved the county lines method of Class A drug supply, being used by the offenders; a method of crime that affects areas right across the UK. The county lines method of drug dealing heavily involves the use of mobile phones to communicate with others in the conspiracy and to alert local users when drugs are for sale. Marsden and Finley, both local users themselves, operated across different organised crime groups, facilitating the supply of drugs to other users in Barrow, in return for financial payment.

On Saturday 22nd June 2019, both offenders were arrested following an investigation into their activity. Marsden was found in possession of 10 wraps of heroin and 10 wraps of crack cocaine. Finley was also found in possession of Class A drugs.

During the investigation, the area drugs unit showed the extent of their criminality utilising a range of police tactics. This ultimately led to both defendants pleading guilty at the first opportunity.

Investigations such as this involve specialist departments within the police service. The departments involved in this investigation are:

  • South Drugs Unit, Intelligence Units and

  • Uniformed police officers

Cumbria Police’s, Drugs Units undertake vital activity across Cumbria that is largely unseen by the public.

A spokesperson for South Cumbria Drug Squad said: “Although Marsden and Finley were at the bottom end of the supply chains, they were unashamedly supplying other local users with Class A drugs from multiple sources. Any part of such a chain can’t function without another, and so their actions were key in the continuance of the supply of harmful, unregulated, illegal drugs into Barrow.

“People may look at Cumbria’s quiet, rural setting and think it is an easy target, but it simply is not. We will use every power available to us to make sure controlled drugs do not make it on to our streets. If you come to Cumbria to commit crime, we will find you, we will stop you and you will go to jail.

“I hope that today’s sentencing acts as a deterrent to anyone considering dealing in Cumbria. The consequence if you take this route in life are that you to, could have your freedom taken away from you, impacting your job, you family and your future, for life.”

Please use one of the following resources to report suspicious or suspected drug activity:

  • Contact police on 101. In an emergency, always dial 999.

  • Contact the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.Email: 101@cumbria.police.uk.

  • Speak to a police officer or PCSO or attend your nearest front counter police station.

  • For more information about court cases and drug-related activity, follow us on social media.

For Facebook and Twitter search for ‘Cumbria Police’ and to follow us on Instagram and Snapchat please search for ‘cumbriacops’.

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