A Ramsgate man who was a key player in a national drug-dealing operation has been jailed for over seven years.
Michael Morgan was sentenced at Canterbury Crown Court on Thursday 1 November for two incidents involving the transportation of cash and cocaine.
On 13 March 2017 a van was stopped by officers in Milton Keynes which was reported to have left Morgan’s home in St Lawrence Chase in Ramsgate earlier in the day.
Inside the van was a cardboard box containing some £70,000 in cash, separated into bundles and bound with elastic bands.
Forensic testing revealed Morgan’s fingerprints on the box and his DNA on the elastic bands.
On Monday 15 May 2017 police stopped a car as it was just pulling out of a car park of commercial premises in Manston and found a black padlocked rucksack in the boot. The driver denied owning the bag or knowing what was inside it.
After forcing the padlock off the bag, officers recovered two large bags of cocaine weighing around 2 kilos, together with around £40,000 in cash.
Officers then found 58-year-old Morgan nearby and he was arrested in connection with the find.
Enquiries by police revealed that Morgan had tricked unsuspecting staff of the commercial premises into looking after the bag earlier in the day and shortly before his arrest, he had left a black plastic carrier bag in the venue as well.
With this plastic bag, a further quantity of cocaine was uncovered. Further searches at Morgan’s home revealed more bags of cocaine.
In total, police seized three-and-a-half kilos of Class A drugs worth an estimated street value of £100,000.
In both cases the drivers of each vehicle were convicted for their part in the operation.
Morgan admitted his involvement in the money laundering and drugs operation and was sentenced to a total of seven-and-a-half years in prison.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Richard Cordery said: “Morgan was clearly towards the top of the tree with regards to these drug deals, despite his earlier protestations to the contrary. The cash involved represents the means by which criminals undermine, corrupt and distort society and the rule of law.
“Morgan’s finances will now be subject of considerable scrutiny and Kent Police will seek to confiscate anything that is directly or indirectly connected with his criminal activities.
“Kent Police will continue to proactively target and investigate those suspected of drug-dealing and being associated with peripheral activities, such as the transportation of cash or other criminal assets. People who take part in this criminality, however minor the role, will have the full force of the law brought against them.”