JAILED: Kyle Cookson (left) and Daniel Reuter
TWO south Essex drug dealers have been jailed for a total of 17 years after 20kg of cocaine with a potential street value of over £1.5 million was found hidden in an industrial unit.
Daniel Reuter, 34, of Church Road, Billericay, and Kyle Cookson, 32, of Gladden Fields, South Woodham Ferrers, were stopped in a van by organised crime detectives outside an industrial unit on Ash Tree Farm Industrial Estate, Roxwell, near Chelmsford, in July.
An initial search of the cargo area at the industrial estate revealed a carrier bag containing envelopes with five one-kilo blocks of the drug inside, packed in with boxes of frozen food. Inside the unit, another ten kilos were found in a safe.
Hidden: Drugs found stashed in the second van
A further five kilos were recovered from the van.
Officers discovered another van at the unit had been fitted with a purpose-built, steel void, accessed by a removable wooden floor, which was used to conceal drugs.
A small amount of cash and two luxury watches were recovered from Reuter’s home address during a separate search.
HAUL: The drugs could have been worth £1.5 million on the streets
Reuter and Cookson, who was running the firm Cookson Concrete from another industrial unit off Cranes Farm Road, Basildon, both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply class A drugs and were sentenced to nine years and eight years respectively at Woolwich Crown Court today.
The raid was carried out by the joint National Crime Agency (NCA) and Metropolitan Police Service’s Organised Crime Partnership (OCP).
Spencer Barnett from the Organised Crime Partnership, said: “Reuter and Cookson used the industrial unit to coordinate their illicit activities, shown by the heat sealing machines, brown tape and other items of packaging found at the site.”“The sentencing today is a result of the OCP’s efforts to protect communities from the violence, gang culture and criminal activity fuelled by the illegal supply of class A drugs.”