Three teenage county lines drug dealers have been jailed after travelling 70 miles from Leeds to Bridlington to sell thousands of pounds worth of drugs.

Zaccai Chambers, 18, of Cotterdale View, Emile Riggon, 19, of Morritt Drive, and Alban Rianga, 18, of Eden Mount, all in Leeds, were caught in possession of large amounts of drugs and cash, in Bridlington, on April 29

Stephanie Hollis, prosecuting the trio at Hull Crown Court on Thursday, said police had spotted the three teens in the Lansdowne area of the town and arrested them.

The court heard how over £300 was found in Riggon's jean pockets, as well as £930 worth of Class A drugs in his underpants.

In Rianga's underwear, police found 300 wraps of cocaine with a street value of over £3,000.

Shortly after the arrest a member of the public handed a Lidl shopping bag in to police also containing £340 worth of cocaine, Ms Hollis said.

The court was told Chambers had been driving the trio to Bridlington in his Ford Fiesta and that police had also found a stab vest, as well as Chambers' passport and a series of mobile phones with texts indicative of drug dealing in the car.

All three were being sentenced for possession with intent to supply Class A drugs, as well as possession of criminal property in the form of the cash.

Zaccai Chambers was driving the group from Leeds in his Ford Fiesta, Hull Crown Court heard

But Chambers was also charged with possessing and intending to supply cannabis and ecstasy after nearly £4,000 worth of the drugs were found in his property in Leeds, as well as a bag of shotgun ammunition, the court heard.

In police interview, Ms Hollis said he had said the shotgun ammunition was used for hunting and claimed not to recognise the stab vest found in his car.

Ms Hollis said all three defendants pleaded guilty to their crimes in the magistrates' court on May 1.

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She told the court Chambers had two previous court appearances for three offences, including possession of a blade and possession of cannabis with intent to supply in August 2019, for which he had been given a nine month jail sentence suspended for two years.

He was therefore breaching his suspension order by committing his latest crimes.

Rianga had one previous conviction for robbery with an imitation firearm after he held up a shop using a BB gun to steal alcohol in 2017, the court was told.

He was the only one of the three not breaching a suspension order.

Riggon had two previous convictions for four offences, the court heard, including a two year jail sentence suspended for two years after he was found with a knife and large quantities of drugs in a flat in Harrogate.

Charles Blatchford, defending Chambers and Rianga, said the case "bore all the hallmarks" of a county lines operation where the teenagers had been exploited by those "further up the chain" and were likely mules or drug runners.

He said the case indicated the problems some county lines operations have had because of lockdown, with gangs having to resort to sending dealers from cities like Leeds because of a lack of people out on the street selling in the local areas.

Alban Rianga has been jailed

He said during the interview for the pre-sentence report that Chambers had displayed unusual behaviour, from being "unable to respond" to questions to "giggling like a child", which he said indicated an immaturity that made him vulnerable to criminal gangs.

But he said Chambers had been engaging well with the probation services after his previous conviction and that he had already completed 100 out of the 200 hours of unpaid work he had been sentenced to.

For Rianga, Mr Blatchford said it was "tragic" that the son of "clearly decent parents, who had tried to support him and put him on the right track" had "fallen between the cracks of an otherwise good family".

He said Rianga had helped out at his dad's restaurant and that he "has something to offer society in the long-term".

He said he and his family had been subject to threats and intimidation, with his mum's address even being put online.

Mr Blatchford also asked the judge to bear in mind the recent Court of Appeal case of R v Christopher Manning in his sentencing, which ruled that the "impact of a custodial sentence is likely to be heavier during the current emergency" and that the risk of the Covid-19 pandemic in prisons can be taken into account when deciding whether to suspend a sentence.

Emile Riggon was sentenced at Hull Crown Court

Mark Foley, defending Riggon, asked the judge to give full credit for his early guilty plea but said "the facts for the case speak for themselves" and that his dealing was "deliberate and done with knowledge".

He said Riggon had issues with his behaviour growing up and had become ingratiated with a group of youths heavily engaged in activity with drugs in the Leeds area.

"This is a young person who is vulnerable and lacks maturity so there is the propensity to be exploited by others more criminally associated than him," he said.

Sentencing the trio, Judge John Thackray said: "All three of you have been given chances in the past and despite those chances all three have gone on to commit serious offences.

"There is no doubt you were acting together as a team and your offending involved drugs worth thousands."

But he said he would bear in mind their youth, saying: "You all have time to change your ways."

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He sentenced Chambers and Riggon to 28 months in a young offenders' institute, with their sentences aggravated by the breach of the previous suspended sentence, and Rianga to 24 months.

They will each have to serve half of their sentence behind bars and the rest out on licence.

Chambers was also disqualified from driving for 26 months.