A DRUG dealer from Heybridge has been jailed for three years after a police search dog sniffed out wraps of drugs in his bedside table.

Nathan Hawes, 28, was jailed at Chelmsford Crown Court on March 1 after admitting two charges of possession of cannabis and cocaine, which fall within the two most serious categories of illegal substances, with intent to supply.

Hawes was arrested after Essex Police executed a warrant at an address in Creasen-Butt Close, Heybridge at around 10am on April 21 last year.

Officers forced their way into the property and conducted a search room to room.

A sniffer dog unit was brought in to sweep the property. With the help of search dog Shifty, officers discovered cocaine, wraps of cannabis weighed and ready to be sold and cash hidden in the drawer of a bedside table.

In addition to the drugs being found, a mobile phone which was being used by Hawes was seized, which was later found to contain discussions and details about future drug deals he was intending to carry out.

After being released under investigation, Hawes was later charged with one count of possession with intent to supply class A drugs (cocaine) and one count of possession with intent to supply class B drugs (cannabis).

He was handed three years in prison for class A possession and 15 weeks for class B possession which will run concurrently.

PC Claire Forster, of Essex Police’s Chelmsford Community Policing Team, said: “Nathan Hawes initially denied the charges against him but changed his plea to guilty at the start of his trial due to the weight of evidence against him.

“Drug dealing understandably causes high levels of unrest in our communities. I would urge anyone with information about drug dealing in their local community to report it to Essex Police on 101.”

Information can also be passed anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.