Maidstone dealer jailed after phone encryption cracked
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A Maidstone dealer who conspired to supply large amounts of drugs has been jailed for more than a decade.
Between March and June 2020, Mark Dinnage used an encrypted mobile phone platform to direct couriers purchasing and supplying cocaine, heroin, ketamine and cannabis.
The secure communication system was infiltrated by international enforcement agencies and incriminating details relating to organised criminals in the UK were passed to the National Crime Agency.
The Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate reviewed data concerning Dinnage’s offending and were able to prove the messages co-ordinating the movement of cash and drugs using a pseudonym, were in fact him.
The 42-year-old was arrested on 9 September 2021 at his home address in Lesley Place, Maidstone and was later charged with conspiracy to supply class A drugs and conspiracy to supply class B drugs.
Dinnage pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court and on Tuesday 3 May 2022, was sentenced to 12 years' imprisonment.
Detective Constable Aaron Chapman, of the Serious Organised Crime Unit, said: ‘Dinnage was at a high level in the crime gang that supplied considerable quantities of drugs throughout the county. ‘He will have felt untouchable letting others take the risks whilst using an encrypted communication platform. His confidence was misjudged and he is now serving a prison sentence. ‘We will of course be using the Proceeds of Crime Act to seek to recover cash and any other assets he has acquired through his criminal activity.’