Operation Vegas lands men in jail

Eight men have been sentenced to almost 40 years in jail as part of a huge drugs operation on Tyneside.

£150,000 worth of cash seized in Operation Vegas

Money seized during Operation Vegas Credit: Northumbria Police

During the operation around £150,000 in cash was recovered from various addresses across the North East.

Money seized during Operation Vegas Credit: Northumbria Police

Two motor boats and two caravans were also seized along with nine motor vehicles.

Money seized during Operation Vegas Credit: Northumbria Police
Money seized during Operation Vegas Credit: Northumbria Police
Money seized during Operation Vegas Credit: Northumbria Police

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Drugs operation puts eight behind bars

Eight men have been sentenced to almost 40 years in jail as part of a huge drugs operation on Tyneside.

Operation Vegas, launched in March of last year by Northumbria Police, focused around the behaviour of Robert Eric Blackburn.

Intelligence on Blackburn led officers to believe that he was heavily involved in the large scale dealing of illegal drugs across the force area and further afield.

In August of last year, the intelligence gathered meant that he could be arrested and charged with conspiracy to supply drugs.

During the operation Blackburn was seen to work alongside a number of other individuals in his dealings.

Nine other men were arrested along with Blackburn for being involved in drug dealing.

"We welcome the sentences handed out to these men - it means a number of dangerous individuals involved in the dealing and distribution of large amounts of drugs are off the street for a considerable amount of time.

Vegas was a meticulously planned and executed operation that involved skilled officers carrying out detailed investigation of a number of targets.

While focusing on Blackburn we were able to uncover a web of contacts that he was working with to sell and distribute drugs.

We were able to make a number of arrests and seize drugs, as well as money made through drug dealing. "

– Detective Sergeant Dave Hamill, Northumbria Police Serious and Organised Crime Unit,

Eight sentenced after mass drugs operation on Tyneside

Operation Vegas targeted those involved in supplying drugs on Tyneside Credit: Northumbria Police

Eight men have been sentenced to almost 40 years in jail as part of a huge drugs operation on Tyneside.

The operation, named Operation Vegas, was launched in March 2012 by Northumbria Police's Serious and Organised Crime Unit, to target and disrupt those involved in the supply of drugs in the Tyneside area.

Robert Eric Blackburn, 64, of Hallow Drive, Throckley, was jailed for 11 years for conspiracy to supply cocaine and conspiracy to supply BZP.

David John French, 58, of Ulswater Crescent, Winlaton, was jailed for seven years for conspiracy to supply cocaine and conspiracy to supply BZP.

Alan Atkinson, 44, of Hallow Drive, Throckley, was jailed for six years for conspiracy to supply cocaine.

Alan Bullock, 49, of Tindles Caravan Park, Longframlington, was jailed for six years for conspiracy to supply cocaine.

Alan James Bell, 33, of Falstone Avenue / Centurion Road, Denton, was jailed for two years for entering into a money laundering arrangement.

James Bell, 29, of Linbridge Drive, West Denton, was jailed for two years for conspiring to transfer criminal property.

Robert William Cann, 35 of Kendrick Street, Stoke-on-Trent, was jailed for two years for conspiracy to supply amphetamine.

Brian William Carrier 37, of Harehills Tower, Kenton, was sentenced to three years and eight months for conspiracy to supply amphetamine.