Grinning drug lord wreaked misery in Carlisle by flooding streets with heroin

The head of an organised crime gang who wreaked misery after flooding Carlisle’s streets with hard drugs has been jailed.

Robert Smith was caught surrounded by heroin and dirty cash after police raided a property he was leaving in Wetheral. Hand blenders used to cut the Class A drug were found in the property on Garden Street and officers traced the purchase of these items back to Smith.

They tested positive for traces of heroin and the force seized over 1.1 kilograms of bashed heroin, half a kilogram of compressed heroin and cutting agent. Cumbria Police said a drug expert estimates that the 37-year-old will ‘have likely handled 7.124kg of heroin over the conspiracy period’.

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Smith, of Garden Street, Carlisle, was sentenced at Carlisle Crown Court to nine years in prison for conspiring to supply heroin and two counts of possessing criminal property. The investigation forms part of Operation Alliance – Cumbria Police’s ongoing response to protect the county against serious and organised crime.

On October 14 last year, officers seized a kilogram of heroin from an area of land behind an address linked to Smith on the outskirts of Newtown, Brampton. On January 13 2023, officers executed a warrant on a grey Golf linked to Smith and concealed within the vehicle was £26,850.

The next month, Smith was arrested leaving an address in Wetheral near Carlisle. Upon his arrest, officers conducted a search of the property and surroundings with money, heroin and items relating to the cutting of heroin seized.

T/Detective Inspector Brooker from the Serious and Organised Crime Unit said “Disrupting the supply of drugs is among our policing priorities in Cumbria. Smith was the head of an Organised Crime Group supplying heroin within north Cumbria, a drug expert estimates that Smith will have likely handled 7.124kg of heroin over the conspiracy period.

“We have a strong track record of this in Cumbria and will continue our efforts to tackle the crime surrounding. I hope these sentences send a strong message to those selling high harm drugs such as heroin: we will pursue you, arrest you, and prosecute you no matter where you live.”

A police spokesperson added: “The information we receive from you on drugs supply is crucial to our efforts to tackling this issue. If you witness drug supply activity or have information, please report this to us. You can do this quickly and easily online at www.cumbria.police.uk/report-it.

“Or complete our online intelligence reporting form to share information that you feel could help us investigate a suspected crime or perhaps safeguard someone who may need our help – Tell Us Something – Cumbria Constabulary Alternatively, you can contact independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.”

Lancs Live – Cumbria