Lengthy Jail Sentence for Isleworth Cocaine Dealer

Sam Coleman had sought to buy guns to protect his business

Sam Coleman
Sam Coleman. Picture: Met Police


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September 8, 2023

A 33-year-old man from Isleworth has been jailed for 21 years after it was found that he was a major player in a large operation supplying cocaine to West London.

Sam Coleman was sentenced on Thursday, 24 August at Kingston Crown Court after it was heard how he was involved in dealing in drugs with an estimated street value of £936,000, as well as the conspiracy to supply more than 26kgs of cocaine.

Between March and June 2020, He also sought to obtain firearms and ammunition to protect his drugs business.

His downfall came after police in Europe managed to crack Encrochat, an encrypted messaging system used by criminals who believed it protected their communications from law enforcement agencies.

Details of Coleman’s messages were passed on to the Metropolitan Police via the National Crime Agency.

On receiving data relating to those using the devices in London in 2020, the Met launched an operation named “Operation Eternal” to target Encrochat users.

Early in the investigation the user 'Lousybrandy' was identified as a significant player in London’s drug trade and someone potentially involved with firearms. Specialist Crime officers and staff from Met Intelligence were ultimately able to review data and were able to identify the person using the 'Lousybrandy' handle as Coleman. Officers described the evidence they collated over time as compelling.

Coleman had obtained the drugs from another Encrochat user, who was working as part of an organised crime network with access to large amounts of cocaine.

‘Lousybrandy’ then used the same network to facilitate the distribution to other users. There had also been significant discussion by ‘Lousybrandy’ in relation to the obtaining of firearms and ammunition.

On 23 February 2021, officers from Central Specialist Crime’s Op Eternal team carried out a search warrant at Coleman’s address and car. They seized cocaine, a knife, watches and £36,325 in cash and arrested Coleman.

Cocaine and cash found at Coleman's house on Castle Road
Cocaine and cash found at Coleman's house on Castle Road. Picture: Met Police

Officers from the Met’s Cyber Crime team analysed Coleman’s phone and discovered images of kilogram blocks of cocaine, large amounts of cash, and a large amount of cannabis.

Within Coleman’s search history there was also evidence of a conversation in which he had planned to buy cocaine purity test kits.

He was found guilty of six separate offences relating to the supply of cocaine, attempting to get guns and ammunition and possession of the proceeds of crime.

Detective Constable Andy Chapman, from Op Eternal in Specialist Crime, said, “Coleman arranged large-scale drug deals with his ultimate aim being to make as much money as possible, with no thought of the misery and devastation caused in communities by drug supply, and the violence it leads to.

“He thought that Encrochat gave him anonymity and the freedom to openly arrange serious crimes, and shielded him from law enforcement. However, multiple teams across the Met have worked for several years to identify Coleman, and build what was a rock-solid case against him.

“Op Eternal investigations over the last three years have resulted in the Met identifying and jailing major players in the criminal fraternity, and stemming the flow of drugs and guns onto the streets. The drugs trade relies upon exploitation and violence to operate and we will continue to relentlessly pursue those involved, and put them before the courts.”

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