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Chatham men Matthew Smith and Jamie Masters charged after police pursuit ends in Maidstone's Royal Engineers Road

By Ed McConnell

Two men will today appear in court charged with possessing cocaine with intent to supply after three police vehicles deliberately crashed into the car the pair were travelling in.

It brought a high-speed pursuit along a key route into Maidstone to an end at 2pm on Tuesday.

Matthew Smith, 25, of Colchester Close, Chatham, and 28-year-old Jamie Masters, of Bolner Close, Chatham, are due to appear before Medway Magistrates' Court today.

Three police cars were used to bring a suspect vehicle to a halt following a chase

Police have defended their actions after the cars were used as part of a tactical manoeuvre to stop the red Skoda the pair were travelling in near the Shell Petrol Station on Royal Engineers Road.

The incident led to lengthy delays for motorists, with traffic queuing back to the Running Horse junction after Springfield roundabout was closed.

Two suspects were detained following the incident on Royal Engineers Road

A Kent Police spokesman said: "Three police vehicles were used to bring a pursuit to a controlled conclusion.

"Both passengers were arrested at the scene on suspicion of drugs offences."

Only officers trained in Tactical Pursuit and Containment – the use of police cars to bring suspect vehicles to a stop – can authorise the strategy as a last resort after assessing the risk to public safety.

The road coming in to Maidstone was closed following the incident

No figures were available on how many times the tactic has been used by Kent Police.

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