A man who supplied cocaine sold by Stroud drug dealers was sentenced to eight years and four months in prison at Bristol Crown Court today.

Eris Hoti, 33, of Carlton Drive, London, was arrested at Luton Airport on August 18 with £10,000 in cash in his suitcase while trying to catch a flight to Albania, where he is originally from.

He pleaded guilty to one charge of conspiracy to supply cocaine and one charge of possession of criminal property in October.

Commenting after sentencing, Acting Detective Sergeant Daniel New from the Serious and Organised Crime Unit at Gloucestershire police, said: “This investigation demonstrates our commitment to bring to justice those who inflict the greatest harm on our communities. The prosecution of Eris Hoti reflects Gloucestershire Constabulary’s tireless efforts to identify and prosecute these offenders, no matter where in the country they operate from.”

Hoti moved drugs from London through a Gloucester-based organised crime gang to five men from Stroud who were jailed in May 2019, following a complex investigation by the SOCU which saw 11 men sentenced for a combined total of 69 years.

That investigation resulted in the seizure of two kilograms of cocaine and £100,000 in cash, and evidence of a further 24kg of cocaine with an estimated value of £1 million being obtained. Named operation Solero, it sought to develop intelligence around serious and organised crimes groups operating in Gloucestershire, to disrupt this activity and to obtain successful prosecutions.

Anyone who has concerns or intelligence about drug dealing can report via this link or anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.