Police seized cocaine worth more than £6 million from Christopher Low (left) and Michael Henson (Credit: National Crime Agency)
The National Crime Agency and Metropolitan Police recovered 76 kilos of cocaine after tracking Christopher Low and Michael Henson between May and September last year.
Low, 47, from Ongar, arranged to collect the drugs with help from Henson, 52, of Harlow, who had access to large sums of cash to pay for the deals.
Detectives observed Low selling five kilos of cocaine to a man in Grays in July.
In September, he was seen driving a Mercedes to Henson’s home where he collected a Jaguar XF. He then traveled to Brentford, west London, where he picked up a heavy-looking suitcase from the driver of a Land Rover Discovery.
Officers stopped him and found 40 kilos of high purity cocaine with an estimated street value of £3.2 million.
Low was arrested for conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, to which he responded: ”I’m just the driver, getting paid to do pick up.”
One of two mobile phones seized had the encrypted app Signal downloaded.
One message on the screen said “can you please ask paper not to come like this in future”. This showed Low was responsible for directing business rather than just working as a driver.
Further messages described a previous amount of 40 kilos of cocaine which was supplied.
Officers searched Low’s home and found a small amount of cocaine worth £5,600 and £44,420 in cash.
When officers arrested Henson for conspiring to supply class A drugs outside his home address on the same day, he became violent and attempted to escape.
They seized two mobile phones and searched his home. They found 37 kilos of high purity cocaine with a street value of £2.96 million, which was hidden in a garden shed, a small amount of mephedrone worth £6,800, herbal cannabis worth £900 and £69,800 in cash.
Examination of the seized phones showed the pair were using Signal to arrange the deals, including logistics and pick up points.
Low and Henson were subsequently charged with conspiracy to supply class A drugs, possessing criminal property and producing class B drugs.
They admitted these at Chelmsford Crown Court in October 2021 and were jailed for 16 years and 14 years respectively at the same court on Friday, 4 March.
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