A Brighton drug dealer who went on the run for more than a year is back behind bars after being nicked by traffic cops in Croydon.
Richard Blackwood, 39, who was living in Greentrees Crescent, Lancing, when he jumped bail, previously lived in Saunders Park View, Hollingdean.
He skipped bail during the second week of his trial for drug dealing and money laundering at Hove Crown Court in March last year.
The cannabis dealer was sentenced in his absence to three and a half years in prison in May last year. And last Friday (5 August) back at Hove Crown Court he had four months added to his sentence for breaking his bail.
Sussex Police said: “On (Wednesday) 20 July this year Blackwood was arrested while driving in Croydon by Metropolitan Police officers from their South East Roads and Traffic Policing Command who stopped the vehicle as it had been suspected of being involved in a crime under investigation by the Croydon Borough Police Emergency Response Team.
“The officers checked on Blackwood and discovered that he was disqualified from driving and wanted by Sussex Police.”
Detective Constable Jon Freeman, of the Brighton Organised Crime Investigation Team, said: “We worked closely with our colleagues from the Sussex Serious Organised Crime Unit and Economic Crime Unit, which resulted in Blackwood’s conviction.
“We’d also like to thank the Metropolitan Police officers whose diligent and thorough work enabled us to bring Blackwood back to court.”
Last year Blackwood’s fellow defendant and partner Melissa Miller, 30, who used to live in Hove, received a six-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, having been found guilty of money laundering.
A third defendant, Ricky Lloyd, who had previously pleaded guilty to helping Blackwood with his cannabis dealing, received 12 months in prison, suspended for two years.
A fourth defendant, Luke Pullen, who was also charged with having cannabis with intent to supply in July 2012 with Blackwood and Lloyd, was found not guilty.
He had though previously pleaded guilty to another charge of having cannabis with intent to supply from September 2012 and received 15 months in prison, suspended for two years.
Blackwood was jailed for five years in December 2007 for selling cocaine and heroin and for money laundering.
He was due to be deported to Jamaica after his release from prison but won the right to stay on human rights grounds at a tribunal.
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