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A cocaine dealer has been jailed after he was caught in the act supplying users from a car in Cranbrook.

Only a small quantity of drugs were initially discovered when police searched Charlie Matthew’s vehicle, before evidence from his mobile phone revealed the true extent of his criminal network. 

Officers from the Tunbridge Wells Community Policing Team arrested the 26-year-old on 21 October 2020, after he had been seen at the wheel of a suspicious Ford Focus parked in Carriers Road, Cranbrook.

Charlie - desktop
 Charlie Matthews

Searches led to the seizure of five deal bags of cocaine, concealed in a glasses case. Around £340 in cash was also recovered.

Adverts and debt lists

A phone taken from Matthews was sent away for a full digital download, the results of which illustrated he was heavily involved in the supply of Class A drugs across west Kent.

Evidence obtained from the phone included drug advertising messages and a tick list of customer debts.

Forensic tests also linked Matthews, of Romford Road, Pembury to the drug packages and he pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court to possessing cocaine with intent to supply. A further charge of being concerned in the supply of cocaine will lie on file.

Matthews was sentenced on Friday 4 March 2022, to two years and two months’ imprisonment.


Sergeant Ed Kavanagh said: ‘This sentence again illustrates just how effective our officers are in identifying offenders, who wrongly believe they can operate within our communities without consequence.

I can assure residents we will continue to make the streets a hostile environment for anyone involved in the supply of drugs.

‘Please also remember to let us know straight away if you see anything suspicious. Call 999 if it is a crime in progress, otherwise contact 101.’

By Ed

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