Installing electricity meters, it must be said, probably isn’t a line of work that brings with it regular major crime scene investigations. But for one workman, a normal work day became a major drug’s bust when he made a startling discovery while visiting one home for a routine meter fitting.
During a fitting at a property in South Shields last week, the worker stumbled across bags full of white powder, alerting the police upon his discovery.
When the authorities showed up, they uncovered other drug paraphernalia, including a set of scales, with smaller quantities of cocaine portioned up.
A subsequent investigation was launched, leading to the arrest of a 39-year-old man under the charge of possessing a controlled drug with intent to supply.
Inspector Phil Baker praised the workman’s crime busting efforts, saying, “This was an excellent discovery by a member of the public who was carrying out a job at an address when he stumbled across a significant amount of drugs.
“He absolutely did the right thing by picking up the phone and I would like to thank him personally for his intervention. His decision has helped keep these drugs out of the hands of some of the most vulnerable people in our community.
“Criminals who supply these type of drugs give little thought to those who use them. Unfortunately as we have seen so often, it is those who are in desperate need of help that turn to drugs and a life of crime to fund their addiction.
“Under the banner of Operation Sentinel, we are committed to ensuring those who supply drugs across our region are brought to justice – and I have no doubt that this discovery will have dented the pockets of those behind the operation.”
The 39-year-old man who was originally been arrested has been released under investigation, with enquiries still ongoing.