Man Jailed For Drugs Offences

A Newtownabbey man has been handed a custodial sentence for a series of drugs offences following police raids as part of a paramilitary probe.

49-year-old William Axon will serve two years imprisonment, half in custody and half on licence. He was sentenced at Laganside Crown Court on Tuesday 18 June for possession of a class A drug, possession with intent to supply and possession of criminal property.

The charges followed a search of Mr Axon's property in the Monkstown area as part of an investigation linked to the south east Antrim UDA. High purity cocaine worth an estimated £8400 was seized along with over £6000 in cash.

Some of the cocaine had been divided up into individual bags leading police to believe that the drugs were destined for sale in the local community.

Detective Sergeant Farrelly from the PSNI's Paramilitary Crime Task Force said: "I welcome Tuesday's conviction of William Axon which is further evidence of the PCTF's continuing commitment to tackling Paramilitarism and associated offending.

"Those who deal drugs only care about making a profit, they do not care about the harm and loss caused to local families. Paramilitary groups and those who deal drugs only serve to blight the communities they operate in. These people do not care about the damage that they cause, preying on the most vulnerable members of their communities and trying to control them by using fear and violence.

"We are committed to bringing those involved in the criminality associated with Paramilitarism before the courts and will continue to aggressively and proactively pursue those who are intent on damaging our communities by supplying illegal drugs. The communities most damaged by the sale of illegal drugs support our ongoing efforts and I would appeal for anyone with information regarding criminality by paramilitary organisations to contact police on 101."

Information can also be provided anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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