Two men have been sentenced for County Lines drug dealing in Hastings following a joint operation by Sussex Police and the Metropolitan Police.
Broli Martin, 23, and Amedeo Seccia, 28, were sentenced at Lewes Crown Court on Monday (November 14), after pleading guilty to possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin and being concerned in supply of crack cocaine and heroin.
Martin, of Palmerston Road, Enfield, north London, was jailed for a total of five and a half years and Seccia of Bohemia Road, St Leonards, was sentenced to 18 months in prison, suspended for 24 months.
Cash, drugs, and phones were also seized as part of the police operation.
On November 15 last year, police in Hastings spotted two men coming out of a seafront hotel and dealing class A drugs to known drug users.
Officers then located the room where they were staying and discovered wraps of heroin and crack cocaine, along with £2,000 in cash.
Research on both men’s mobile phones by the Metropolitan Police Op Orochi team revealed that Martin was running a county drugs line from North London and had been doing so since his release on licence from a previous conviction for drug supply in October last year.
County lines dealing is the sale of drugs from large urban areas, such as London, into smaller towns such as Hastings. Dealers and customers are linked by mobile phone numbers, through which deals are conducted.
Investigator Julian Stokes said: “This is one of a number of significant sentences handed down by the courts for drug supply offences investigated by the Project ADDER team based in Hastings, and it demonstrates that the supply and distribution of drugs will absolutely not be tolerated in our town.
“County Lines are responsible for bringing harmful and dangerous drugs into our community, and we do a huge amount of work to catch those responsible.
“To do this effectively, we work incredibly closely with other agencies and police forces, including the Metropolitan Police’s Op Orochi team.
“This partnership working means we can tackle County Drugs Lines from both ends – the origin, which is often in London, and the end destination, which is usually smaller coastal or rural towns such as Hastings.
“We’re grateful to the Met for working so closely with us so we can dismantle these County Lines and help protect our communities from drug-related harm.”
Project ADDER (Addiction, Diversion, Disruption, Enforcement and Recovery) was launched by the Home Office at the start of 2021 with the aim of reducing drug-related crime and protecting people from harm.
In the year since its launch, more than 600 Organised Crime Groups have been disrupted nationally, with almost 10,500 arrests and £3.5m in cash seized across England and Wales. More than 13,000 people have also been supported in drug treatment interventions delivered by outreach workers.