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Issue:- Monday, 11 April 2016

Headlines and reports on this page = 4 news items.    Page - 8.

Gang jailed for supplying class A and B drugs

A North West gang has been jailed on 11 April 2016, for 51 years, for distributing multi million pound quantities of drugs to South Wales.

Officers from 'Titan', the regional organised crime unit, seized cocaine, amphetamines, cash, cars and even a jet ski during drugs raids in Merseyside, Manchester, Cheshire and Wales, in July 2015..

11 men were arrested in Liverpool, Wirral, St Helens, Widnes, Swinton and Bridgend by Titan detectives working alongside officers from several local Police Forces and the National Crime Agency. 7 were later charged and put before the courts.

Investigators were able to prove that the gang distributed 200 kilogrammes of amphetamines in a series of drug runs between Merseyside and South Wales.

Andrew Steven Rogers, aged 45, of Wesley Street in Maesteg, Brigend received the drugs, but denied conspiring to supply Class B drugs. He stood trial, but was found guilty by a jury and was today jailed for 12 years.

James Bush, aged 34, from Ash Grove, Wallsey was jailed for 12 years for playing a leading role in both the supply of cocaine to criminals in Merseyside and the amphetamines to South Wales.

Carl Currie, aged 37, from Newstead Road, Liverpool was imprisoned for 4 years and 8 months after Police found 4 kilogrammes of amphetamines in his house and 20 kilogrammes in his car when he visited the Maestag area.

Peter McCaffrey, aged 32, of Sandy Road, Sefton was sent to prison for 5 years and 8 months, after 9 kilogrammes of amphetamines were found in his Subaru which was stopped by patrols in Seaforth, in 2015. A search of his house lead to £24,000 in cash being seized under Proceeds of Crime Act powers, as well as a large amount of cannabis bush.

Adam Parkes, aged 34, of Sorrell Way in Clock Face, St Helens was jailed for 5 years and 8 month for being involved in the distribution of cocaine.

Joseph Poulson, aged 27, of Davenham Court in Wavertree, Liverpool was imprisoned for 4 years for conspiring to supply cocaine. And Louis Myles, aged 35, from Milton Avenue in Widnes, Cheshire was given 7 years for his role in the amphetamine conspiracy.

Detective Superintendent Jason Hudson, head of operations at Titan said:- "This gang were responsible for moving large quantities of Class A and B drugs around the country, mainly from Merseyside to South Wales. They made dozens of trips to Bridend to supply criminal contacts there, returning to the North West with the cash which they then spent on luxury items like nice cars and even a jet ski. The drugs this gang were trading in will have damaged a great many lives and sparked violence between criminals further down the food chain who sold them on the street. Yet this group will not have cared about that. They just cared about lining their pockets, despite the misery their actions have caused. Titan exists to take out gangs of this kind who commit serious, highly organised crime such as drugs supply. In this case we used new, improved Proceeds of Crime Act powers to strip them of their assets at the time we carried out the raids and a process is on going right now to sell those luxury vehicles; which were bought with drug money; and reinvest that money into fighting crime. Serious organised crime causes massive problems in Towns, Cities and Villages across the North West and beyond and Titan will keep working hard alongside local Police Forces and the National Crime Agency, to put the criminals responsible behind bars."

Society's Spring Fundraising Blooms £25,000 for Marie Curie

THE Yorkshire Building Society have had a successful spring fundraiser to help it near its fundraising target of £1 million for its:- 'Hour of Need' campaign, in aid of Marie Curie. Yorkshire Building Society branches and customers around the country including Southport's:- 'got behind the daffodil' in February 2016, raising an impressive £25,000 in support of Marie Curie.

The money has been raised by selling the charity's iconic daffodil pin badges, donating clothes for sale in Marie Curie shops after colleagues and customers spring cleaned their wardrobes and holding Easter themed raffles.  Every £20 raised during the Society's Hour of Need campaign will help fund 1 hour of Marie Curie nursing care. The Society is aiming to raise £1million by December 2016, which equates to funding 2 hours of care by a Marie Curie Nurse for every hour of the campaign.

Sasha Pauley, charity partnership manager at Yorkshire Building Society, said:- "We have been overwhelmed by the level of support people in our communities across the UK have shown for the Hour of Need campaign. The money raised in March will help provide 1,250 hours of nursing care for people living with any terminal illness in their hour of need."

Jude Bridge, Executive Director of Marketing, Fundraising and Public Affairs at Marie Curie, said:- "We're really grateful to Yorkshire Building Society staff and customers who helped to support this year's Great Daffodil Appeal, as part of the Society's Hour of Need campaign to raise £1million for Marie Curie. Their amazing fundraising efforts throughout March will enable Marie Curie Nurses to provide vital hands on care and support to people with a terminal illness and their loved ones at a time when they need us the most."

The Society's Hour of Need campaign was launched in 2014 with the aim of raising £500,000 by December 2016. Thanks to the strength of support this was reached a year early with the current total standing at £870,000, the Society has now set its sights on reaching £1million.

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