A drug dealer who played a “principal and leading role” in a conspiracy to supply high-purity cocaine has been jailed for 18 years.

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Paul Wesley, 38, of Fowlmere Road, Foxton, was jailed on Thursday after being convicted of conspiracy to supply cocaine.

Judge Lynn Tayton, sentencing, described Wesley as having a “principal and leading role” in the Cambridgeshire conspiracy.

He stood trial at Leicester Crown Court in December, and was convicted alongside Joseph O’Neill, 36, from Burton Latimer. A third member of the gang, Cyrus Kazak, 49, of Woodpecker Way, Waterbeach, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply cocaine, supplying cocaine, possession of ecstasy (MDMA) with intent to supply, and possession of ecstasy (MDMA) and was also jailed.

The trial at Leicester crown court heard that Wesley and Kazak were part of an organised crime group supplying drugs both within and outside Cambridgeshire.

Kazak worked for Wesley and as part of their criminal business they supplied high purity cocaine to a crime group operating in Northamptonshire led by O’Neill.

Those in Northamptonshire would regularly send couriers to Cambridgeshire to deal drugs with Kazak. The Northamptonshire-based group would prepare the drugs to a lesser purity for onward supply to others including another criminal group operating from Hampshire.

This criminal business operated for more than two years and, during the police operation, significant quantities of cocaine were recovered.

The gang were arrested in April 2012 as part of Operation Vanguard, which saw 250 officers from Cambridgeshire Police carry out dawn raids on properties across the south of the county.

Detective Inspector Craig Harrison, from Cambridgeshire Police, said: “This was a complex and challenging investigation addressing the criminal business of three independent organised crime groups.

“Those involved were organised and professional in conducting their criminal business, not only in terms of their ability to source and distribute high purity cocaine but also in the tactics they employed to avoid detection.

“Drug dealing is a scourge on society that fuels other serious crime including burglary, robbery and anti-social behaviour and we are committed to catching and putting before the courts those involved in it.”

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