GWENT Police has welcomed the conviction and imprisonment of a cocaine dealer from the Caerphilly area.

Julie Smith, 53, was jailed at Cardiff Crown Court on Wednesday after she admitted being concerned in the supply of the Class-A drug.

Officers raided Smith's house in Coed Main, Caerphilly and arrested her as part of Operation Adelaide, an investigation into so-called 'county lines' drug activity.

Gwent Police carried out two early-morning warrants in Caerphilly and Cardiff on October 12 last year, arrested and charging Smith and two other people as part of the operation.

Her co-defendants were given suspended sentences at Wednesday's hearing.

Officers also seized a quantity of drugs, cash, high-value bikes, a moped and multiple phones during the operation.

Following the trio's convictions, PC Rhys Jones of Gwent Police said: “Operations such as this are key to tackling county lines and associated criminality. Class-A drugs cause misery in our communities and we are committed to making Gwent a hostile environment for those seeking to do harm."

Watch footage from the police raid on Smith's home here:


PC Jones also appealed to the public to support the force in their efforts to stamp out county lines offending.

“The public have an important role to play in providing information that can assist us in dismantling drug gangs and safeguarding vulnerable individuals," he said. "I would urge anyone with any information about drug dealing in the community to report it to us, so we can take action.”

What happened in the court case?

A judge sentenced Julie Smith to 30 months in prison after she admitted the charge against her. The court heard Smith, a grandmother, was herself a user of cocaine and had become involved in supplying the drug to others after spending "a large quantity of her own money" on her addiction.

She had been supplied cocaine by another defendant, George Medcraft, who was 18 at the time. Smith then used her son, Robbie Smith, 23, as a "gofer" to deliver drugs to her customers, the court was told.

Medcraft and Julie Smith's roles in the offending were described as "significant" and Robbie Smith's as "lesser".

What is 'county lines' crime?

Gwent Police describes county lines as a drugs distribution model, using mobile phones, where drugs are exported from one area to another, often using vulnerable adults and children.

The force advised the public to watch out for these key signs that a young person could be at risk of exploitation:

• Going missing from school or home

• Significant changes in their emotional well-being

• Meeting unfamiliar people

• Changes in their behaviour

• The use of drugs and alcohol

• Acquiring money or expensive gifts they can’t account for

• Relationships with controlling or older individuals or associated with gangs

• Suspicion of self-harm, physical assault or unexplained injuries

If you are a young person who is worried about being involved in county lines, or know someone who is, you can speak to an adult and let them know how you feel.

You can also contact who allow you to pass on information about crime anonymously. You can contact Childline on 0800 1111 – they are a private and confidential service where you can talk to counsellors about anything that is worrying you.