Man jailed for running County Lines drugs operation in Norwich

Elisha Windett who has been jailed for four years after a county lines investigation in Norwich. Pic

Elisha Windett who has been jailed for four years after a county lines investigation in Norwich. Picture: Norfolk Police - Credit: Norfolk Police

A London man responsible for controlling a County Line drugs supply operation in Norwich has been jailed for four years.

Mousehold Street in Norwich. Picture: Denise Bradley

Mousehold Street in Norwich. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017

Elisha Windett, 26, was sentenced at Norwich Crown Court on Wednesday for being concerned in the supply of crack cocaine and heroin, and possession of a knife, after pleading guilty at a previous hearing.

The court heard how Windett was arrested in Mousehold Street on January 17 2020 following a joint operation between the Norfolk Police County Lines Team and the Metropolitan Police.

The operation, named Op Orochi, focuses on analysing mobile phone data to identify those controlling County Lines from London to Norfolk.

Just prior to his arrest, Windett was seen attempting to dispose of a knife and when stopped by officers he was found to be in possession of mobile phones and cash.

Following further searches of his car, officers found more than £1,300 in cash.

Analysis of the mobile phones established Windett was responsible for running the ‘Rico’ County Line between September 2019 up until his arrest in January.

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PC Martyn Laycock, who was involved in the investigation, said: “This latest sentencing under Operation Orochi demonstrates our excellent partnership work with the Metropolitan Police and our continued commitment to targeting those individuals running County Lines in Norfolk.”

Last year, Norfolk was identified as the area where the Metropolitan Police identified the most youngsters involved in the county lines trade, with 416.

Children as young as 11 have been caught dealing drugs in the county and the movement of London dealers into places like Norfolk has been attributed to a rise in violence in recent years.

In 2019, Norwich topped the list of county cities involved in the drug trade, with 167 young people found from London.

However the latest report released by the Mayor of London’s office, called Rescue and Response, reveals those numbers have been slashed, with Norfolk figures falling by more than 50pc to 198, and Norwich numbers dropping by 77 per cent.