Drug dealer caught out by his love of Stilton cheese
A drug dealer was ‘caught out by his love of Stilton cheese’ when police were able to analyse his fingerprints after he shared a digital photo of himself holding a block in the palm of his hand.
Carl Stewart (39) believed he was safely posting the picture showing some Mature Blue Stilton made at Long Clawson Dairy on a mobile encryption service, which is used by criminals in a bid to evade detection.
But officers were able to crack the ‘encrochat’ service and bring the Liverpool man to justice - he was jailed for 13 years and six months after admitting conspiracy to supply cocaine, heroin, MDMA and ketamine, and a charge of transferring criminal property, at the city’s crown court on Friday.
Det Insp Lee Wilkinson, of Merseyside Police, said: “Carl Stewart was involved in supplying large amounts of class A and B drugs, but was caught out by his love of Stilton cheese, after sharing a picture of a block of it in his hand through encrochat.
“His palm and fingerprints were analysed from this picture and it was established they belonged to Stewart.”
Around 60,000 users of encrochat have been identified worldwide, with about 10,000 of them in the UK – all involved in coordinating and planning the supply and distribution of drugs and weapons, money laundering and other criminal activity.
The sentencing of Stewart was part of national Operation Venetic, which came about after law enforcement officials in Europe managed to crack the ‘encrochat’ service being used by criminals involved in serious and organised crime to carry out their business.