Fringe Box



Jail For County Lines Dealer Who Advertised ‘Special Offers’ of Class A Drugs

Published on: 5 Sep, 2020
Updated on: 6 Sep, 2020

A drug dealer who ran the marketing for a prolific county line delivering drugs to Surrey has been jailed for 44 months.

Omed Raofi, 21, advertised the drugs his gang supplied, sending thousands of text messages to vulnerable drug users in East Surrey, with “special offers” on crack cocaine and heroin, signing off the texts with the county line name: “Harlem”.

His clients would then text him their orders for delivery; or he would share where and when one of his drugs runners would be in the area, so the users could meet and buy drugs face to face.

The name “Harlem” was used in the same way that a legitimate business would use their branding, to emphasise for users the quality and service they could expect.

Phone numbers used were changed frequently. When Raofi was arrested, officers found four “burner” phones, five extra sim cards, and boxes for several other phones. They also seized £420 in cash, now forfeited under the Misuse of Drugs legislation.

Raofi was arrested in June at his home in Fairmead Crescent, Edgware. At Guildford Crown Court in July he admitted two charges of supplying class A drugs and was sentenced yesterday. A police spokesman said: “Omed Raofi thought he could keep ahead of the law by handling the marketing, rather than the delivery, of the drugs. He’d frequently change phone numbers, using pay-and-go sims in cheap ‘burner phones’, in an attempt to stay off our radar.

“We are often able to arrest the drugs runners, and people like Raofi regard the runners as expendable. By targeting the people responsible for the marketing we believe we have completely dismantled the activities of this criminal gang.”

Police say they are doing all we can to make Surrey the safest county, but they rely on information from the people. If you believe you’ve seen signs of drug-dealing in your community, please report it. Even events that may seem small or insignificant could help build a picture of wider issues:

What are the signs of potential drug-dealing?

  • Lots of visitors, who don’t stay very long, arriving at all times of the day and night;
  • People waiting in cars outside particular properties exchanging small packets or cash;
  • Lots of visitors bringing items such as T.Vs or bikes but leaving empty-handed; and
  • Lone/vulnerable neighbours suddenly having groups of young men living at their address.

Police want to know:

  • Time, date and place;
  • Vehicle registrations and the make, model and colour;
  • Descriptions of people and details of what they were doing;
  • Direction they travelling to and from; and
  • How many times you have seen them and is it always at the same time?

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