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Pair jailed for dealing heroin and crack cocaine across Huntingdonshire

Two men have been sentenced for a total of 21 years in prison following a covert operation to crack down on the large scale supply of heroin and crack cocaine across Huntingdonshire.

Warren Arnold Credit: Cambridgeshire Police
John Eric Martin Credit: Cambridgeshire Police

Officers working on the case, named Operation Hush, saw numerous drug dealers from across Cambridgeshire attend a property in Ferndown Drive, Godmanchester, where John Eric Martin and Warren Arnold lived.

They also witnessed a number of meetings take place between John Eric Martin and the dealers. Shortly after these meetings began, Charlene Taylor would be seen to leave her home in and deliver a quantity of Class A drugs which were then passed on to the network of dealers from across the county by Martin and Arnold.

The culmination of the operation saw the arrest of all three key individuals on 18 March 2014, and the recovery of thousands of pounds worth of heroin, crack cocaine, cocaine hydrochloride, amphetamine, cannabis, MDMA, cutting agents, thousands of pounds in cash and one firearm.

Between them they were charged with 12 offences including conspiracy to supply crack cocaine and heroin. Both Martin and Arnold denied all the charges. Taylor initially pleaded not guilty however later changed her plea at a hearing at Peterborough Crown Court in October last year.

Following a two week trial late last month at Peterborough Crown Court Martin and Arnold were found guilty and sentenced to a total of 21 years. Charlene Taylor, 32, will be sentenced at a later date.

John Eric Martin, 44, of Rodney Road in Huntingdon, was sentenced to eight years in prison for conspiring to supply class A drugs and a further two-and-a-half years, to run concurrently, for possession with intent to supply class A drugs.

Warren Arnold, 43, of Ferndown Drive in Godmanchester, was also sentenced to eight years in prison for conspiring to supply class A drugs and a further two-and-a-half years, to run concurrently, for possession with intent to supply class A drugs.

"Both Martin and Arnold played key roles in the supply of class A drugs across the county. Those drugs ruined people’s lives and tore families apart, so this is a great result to witness the sentences handed out today by the judge.”

– DC Derek Cornhill

Cambridgeshire: Hartford lorry crash victim named as Philip Asplin

Philip Asplin from March was killed when his lorry hit another vehicle and burst into flames on the A141 at Hartford. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Police have named a man who died in a crash between two lorries in Cambridgeshire yesterday.

Philip Asplin from March was killed when his lorry hit another vehicle and burst into flames on the A141 at Hartford. The other lorry driver suffered serious but not life threatening injuries.

The road is likely to remain closed for most of the day.

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Road to remain closed for most the day following fatal lorry crash

The location of the lorry crash near Huntingdon. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

Police say a road near Huntingdon is likely to remain closed for most of the day after a driver was killed in a crash yesterday.

Two lorries collided on the A141 at Hartford at about 2.30pm.

The other driver - a 23-year-old man from the Greater London area - was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Both lorries caught fire following the crash.

Police said "extension work" needed to be carried out to repair the road surface.

Former Huntingdon mayor avoids jail

The former mayor of a Cambridgeshire town has avoided being jailed today, after admitting attempting to pervert the course of justice.

Saeed Akthar was mayor of Huntingdon in 2008 and 2009, he falsely obtained references for a court case involving his son, including one from Conservative MP Jonathan Djanogly. They were told the references were for a job interview.

Click below to watch a report from Stuart Leithes:

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Former Mayor of Huntingdon pleads guilty to perverting the course of justice

Saeed Akthar.

A former Mayor of Huntingdon has pleaded guilty to attempting to pervert the course of justice at Cambridge Crown Court today.

48-year-old Saeed Akthar, who was mayor of the Cambridgeshire town twice, admitted to trying to persuade a friend to lie to the police on his behalf.

He was given unconditional bail and will be sentenced at the same court on February 20.

Firefighters capture dramatic horse rescue

Firefighters from Cambridgeshire have captured the moment crews rescued a horse which fell into a river while out hunting in Great Staughton.

'The horse was very cold and exhausted' Credit: Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service

Specially trained teams were sent to assist with animal rescue specialists who hoisted the horse from the river off Kimbolton Road on Saturday afternoon.

This incident was at least a mile from any main road and it is thanks to the public involved that we were able to get our animal rescue equipment to the trapped horse.

The riders and others involved provided us with quad bikes and clear directions to navigate the terrain, which undoubtedly meant we were able to get to the horse as quickly as possible.

The horse was very cold and exhausted but thanks to the quick and efficient work by our specially trained crews we were able to get the animal out safely.

If animal owners ever find themselves in situations like these, we would urge them to call the emergency services as soon as possible to give their animal the best chance of survival. We have specially trained animal rescue teams and equipment, so please, do not attempt a dangerous rescue yourself - instead, call the fire service.

– Group Commander, Callum Faint

Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service says "it is believed the horse is alive and well".

Flagship hospital placed in special measures after private firm pulls out

A flagship hospital in Cambridgeshire which is the first in the NHS to be run by a private firm, is to be placed in special measures after the company running it pulled out of the deal.

Circle has been running Hinchingbrook Hospital in Huntingdon for more than two years but says it's now not viable. Hospital inspectors rated the unit 'inadequate.'

Click below to watch our report from Matthew Hudson

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