FIVE members of a drugs gang are behind bars after they supplied Class A drugs across Canvey.

Essex Police launched Operation Butler last year and carried out search warrants across Canvey, Wickford and Stanford-le-Hope on Wednesday, July 10.

Officers recovered a kilogramme of Class A drugs and a large quantity of cannabis.

Five people were arrested and charged with drug offences. They all pleaded guilty in October 2013.

Scott Marsh, a 32-year-old unemployed man from Potash Road in Billericay, 31-year-old unemployed Daniel Tranter from Branksome Park in Stanford-le-Hope, 49-year-old unemployed Lorne Tranter from Munsterburg Road on Canvey Island, 30-year-old unemployed Russell Smith from Munsterburg Road on Canvey Island; and 56-year-old unemployed John Notman from Mount Avenue in Rayleigh all pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply Class A drugs.

Scott Marsh, Daniel Tranter and Lorne Tranter also pleaded guilty to producing cannabis. Russell Smith pleaded guilty to conspiring to supply Class A drugs and possessing two prohibited weapons.

At Basildon Crown Court today, Marsh and Daniel Tranter were jailed for ten-and-a-half years; Russell Smith was jailed for seven years and nine months; Lorne Tranter was jailed for six years; and John Notman jailed for four years.

Senior Investigating Officer, DCI Stuart Smith, said: "This investigation involved the complete dismantlement of an organised crime group that had been active for many years in south-west Essex.

"We have had significant successes in the last couple of years against criminals that supply drugs, commit robberies and burglaries, sell firearms and deal with stolen goods.

"However, all our proactive investigations start with that one telephone call that gives us the starter for ten. We continue to urge residents and retailers who have information about organised crime to contact us or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.”

Detectives will now begin a process of attempting to recover criminal money and will attend further hearings in relation to The Proceeds Of Crime Act to ensure that these criminals and their associates do not profit from their criminality.