Search

Hornchurch car dealer found with cocaine worth millions

18:00 10 March 2012

Dosti transported 10.2kg of cannabis in his car.

Dosti transported 10.2kg of cannabis in his car.

Archant

»A second-hand car dealer who used his Hornchurch business as a front for major drug deals has been jailed for 10 years.

Ben Rowley, 32, was caught with more than £4million worth of high purety cocaine at Frankie’s Car Sales in Upper Rainham Road.

The drugs were found along with a stun gun disguised as a mobile phone and four .32 calibre bullets when police raided the business on December 2 last year, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

Following a surveillance operation, detectives watched Rowley arrive at the site in a Saab.

He went into his office and emerged a few minutes later to talk to a man in a Toyota on the forecourt.

Officers moved in to arrest him. They asked for the keys to his car but he threw them into some bushes where police dogs found them.

Officers recovered the keys and found five packets of white powder inside the Saab. It turned out to be just over five kilos of cocaine at between 87 and 93 per cent purity. Another 1.2kg of coke had been kept in a safe on the site.

Rowley also kept a set of digital scales in his office along with an industrial press used to mould drugs into one kilo packages.

Police calculated the street value of the drugs as being between £1million and £4.4million, depending on how pure they were when sold.

Rowley, of previous good character and who has a six-year-old daughter, gave no comment in his police interview but later admitted drugs and firearm charges.

‘Leading role’

Passing sentence, Judge Tudor Owen said: “You had a leading role in this conspiracy and, given its very high purity, the cocaine could not have been in the country for very long.”

Rowley, of Grays, admitted conspiracy to supply class A drugs, being concerned in the supply of class A drugs, possession a concealed firerm and possessing ammunition without a firearms certificate.

Latest Romford News Stories

Scenes from the explosion. Picture: Alison Braun

One man tells how he saw injured people fleeing and cars hit by debris

Scene of explosion. Picture: Alison Braun

Four people have been treated for injuries following the explosion at the block of flats.

Scenes from the explosion. Picture: Alison Braun

Fire engines and ambulances can be seen lining Gallows Corner in these pictures taken at the scene of the explosion.

Emergency services have been alerted to an explosion at a block of flats in Hornchurch.

Residents are in the process of being evacuated from a block of flats following an explosion.

Holocaust Memorial Day service. Picture: Mark Sepple

It was a time for reflection and to remember those who lost their lives during the Holocaust at a special service.

15:19
Michael Adebolajo Picture: Metropolitan Police

A Romford murderer, who killed soldier Lee Rigby, is seeking £20,000 compensation for losing two teeth.

The mayor of Havering with Store Room Youth Theatre, who will be performing at the variety show, during their rehearsals for the London's New Year's Day Parade.

Enjoy entertainment from the community while supporting good causes at the Mayor of Havering’s Charity Variety Show.

Breaking News

18:05
Emergency services have been alerted to an explosion at a block of flats in Hornchurch.

Residents are in the process of being evacuated from a block of flats following an explosion.

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

Are you in need of a new kitchen? Try our competition and you could win a brand new one!

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

MyOffers H&M Competition

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now