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Drug dealers James Harris and Alfie Briffit jailed after stash found guarded by a snake

By Paul Hooper

Two men were found in a Deal drugs den, surrounded by knives, mobile phones, a stun gun and hundreds wraps of cocaine and heroin… all guarded by a snake.

James Harris, 18, admitted dealing in class A drugs just two weeks before carrying out a violent robbery that landed him with a 68-month sentence.

Now Harris, of Freeman’s Way, Deal, will have to serve an extra 14 months after admitting the drugs charges.

James Harris, of Freemen's Way, Deal, who will have to serve an extra 14 months on top of an existing sentence for robbery after admitting drugs charges

James Harris, of Freemen's Way, Deal, who will have to serve an extra 14 months on top of an existing sentence for robbery after admitting drugs charges

His fellow dealer, Alfie Briffit, 22, was at his home at Redhouse Farm in Deal when it was raided by police.

A third man, who was also arrested during the raid, later received a four-year sentence.

Now a judge at Canterbury Crown Court has heard that some of the wraps of drugs were stashed in a tank where a snake was sleeping.

Briffit – who claimed to have a £1,000-a-week drugs habit – was given a 46-month sentence after admitting drug dealing and possessing a stun gun.

The court heard only the torch part of the weapon worked. Prosecutor Patrick Dennis said although illegal, it couldn’t be used because it was damaged.

He said officers raided the farm in March and discovered the drugs, some of which were hidden inside Harris's bottom, and while the search was taking place mobile phones were also ringing.

In a bedroom where a snake was being kept, police discovered 313 wraps of heroin.

Alfie Briffit, 22, of Redhouse Farm, in Deal was sentenced to 46 months imprisonment for drug offences

Alfie Briffit, 22, of Redhouse Farm, in Deal was sentenced to 46 months imprisonment for drug offences

In total, the drugs found at the home would have a street value of up to £11,000.

Two weeks after the raid, Harris robbed a man celebrating his birthday and trashed his flat before hurling birthday cake on the floor.

Cannabis-smoking Harris, who had armed himself with an axe and three knives, then bizarrely wished his victim Joseph Austin “happy birthday”.

Peter Alcock, for Briffit, said that an expert examined the stun gun and got it to work, but only the torch could be operated.

Briffit told police he had turned to dealing in order to fund his £1,000-a-week drugs habit.

Judge Heather Norton told them: “The police who went to Briffit’s home found a significant enterprise in the supplying of drugs.

“Cases which come to court vary from a couple of wraps – but in this case there were 313 wraps of heroin and in one packet 99 wraps of cocaine, along with packing equipment, scales, knives and phones which were constantly ringing.

“When those phones were analysed, it was clear that you were supplying drugs… and it was no minimal supplying but one on a large scale.”

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