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Police dog Jack sniffs out drugs under patio
1:50pm Friday 18th March 2011 in Basildon
A MASSIVE haul of what is thought to be cocaine was found buried underneath a garden patio in a dawn drugs raid.
The drugs, which are believed to include cocaine, crack and cannabis, are thought to have a street value of thousands of pounds.
Three people were arrested on suspicion of dealing drugs following the find early yesterday morning.
A team of about ten plainclothes police officers raided the bungalow in Gay Bowers, Basildon, and immediately arrested the three people inside before a drugs sniffer dog – spaniel Jack – was let loose to search the property.
After sniffing about the garden, the highly trained dog began barking, indicating he had found something.
Handler PC Elaine Michaels lifted cement patio slabs to uncover the drugs, which were hidden inside a Hovis bread bag containing a large Nescafe coffee jar, bound with masking tape.
When officers opened the jar they found several white rocks, thought to be crack, as well as bags of a white powder, thought to be cocaine, and herbal cannabis. In a separate blue carrier bag there was a massive haul of what appeared to be cocaine. The drugs were taken away by forensic officers and are being analysed.
Following the raid, Det Sgt Alan Blakesley, of the south western tactical team, said: “A large quantity of suspected Class A drugs has been seized as part of this operation and we have stopped it from hitting the streets and blighting our communities. If you commit crime in Basildon or Thurrock you can rest assured we will be coming through your door any day.”
Nearby residents spoke of their relief following the raid.
One woman, who lives in nearby Quilters Straight, said: “I’m glad the police have raided it.
“No one will be surprised by what the police found. It’s not news to anyone around here.”
Three people – a 27-year-old woman and two men, aged 21 and 44, all from Basildon – were all arrested on suspicion of possessing drugs with intent to supply. All three remain in custody at Basildon police station where they are being questioned.
l Following the operation in Gay Bowers police raided a home in Shortlands, Basildon, where they also seized suspected Class A drugs and drug-related paraphernalia. A 43-year-old woman was arrested on suspicion of possessing Class A drugs, and the possession and sale of counterfeit goods and is in custody for questioning.
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