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A man has been jailed for seven years after he was stopped in his car by police in Croydon - and found to be in possession of a handgun, heroin and cocaine - during a police operation involving officers from the Met’s Trident Gang Crime Command and Croydon Borough.
Lerone Vincent, 23 (23.14.91) of Nutfield Road, Thornton Heath was sentenced at Croydon Crown Court on Monday, 19 January to five years imprisonment for possession of a firearm.
He was sentenced to two years imprisonment for possession with intent to supply cocaine and two years imprisonment for possession with intent to supply heroin (one to be served consecutively and one concurrently). He was also sentenced to one year imprisonment for possession of a firearm while prohibited from doing so, to run concurrently.
On 1 October 2014, officers from Croydon’s Safer Transport Team were patrolling the Thornton Heath area as part of a Trident-led operation to identify and target individuals believed to be involved in drug, violent or gang-related crime, when they noticed a Renault Megane.
As they followed the car, it made off at speed into Norbury Avenue. After briefly losing sight of the car, it was spotted again in Northwood Road before turning into Green Lane Gardens - a dead-end - where the vehicle stopped.
Police stopped the driver, who was later identified as Vincent, and searched his car, where they found several wraps of what was later identified as heroin and cocaine. They also found a handgun hidden in the centre console of the dashboard.
Vincent was arrested at the scene and charged the following day with the drugs and firearms offences. He was remanded in custody and appeared at Croydon Crown Court on Monday, 19 January, where he pleaded guilty to all four offences and was sentenced as above.
Detective Constable Troy Benn, from the Met's Trident Gang Crime Command, who investigated the case, said: "This result came about from the good work of the Safer Transport officers who spotted Vincent acting suspiciously as he was driving his car. When they pulled up behind him, he sped off and no-doubt tried to lose them, but he was caught and a dangerous drug dealer has now been taken off the streets because of it.
“We will now be carrying out a financial investigation into Vincent and we’ll be applying for a confiscation order for any assets we believe he has gained as a result of his drug dealing.”