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Man caught inhaling balloons while driving had 48,000 nos cannisters

Keaton Ormerod-Beck, 25, has been jailed for over five years for multiple drug offences (Picture: Cavendish Press/Cheshire Police)

A huge stockpile of nitrous oxide was uncovered by police after they stopped a man who was taking the drug while driving his car.

Keaton Ormerod-Beck was pulled over by unmarked officers in Cheshire after they spotted him inhaling laughing gas from a blue balloon behind the wheel of his Ford Focus at 10am.

After clocking the 25-year-old’s antics on the A41 in Ellesmere Port, cops stopped and searched the car on March 27 this year.

They came across several used nos cannisters littered around the vehicle and up to £6,000 worth of cannabis resin.

Later that day, police raided a nearby lock-up belonging to Ormerod-Beck and an address he had links to in Little Sutton.

A shocking 48,0000 cannisters of the popular party drug dubbed ‘hippy crack’ were found alongside around £3,785 in cash. 

Two kilos of cocaine and drug paraphernalia was also recovered – and the combined estimated value of the illegal stash was around £61.400.

Ormerod-Beck was illegally stashing 48,000 laughing gas canisters with intent to supply (Picture: Cheshire Police)

The 25-year-old also pleaded guilty to charges relating to the supply of cocaine, ketamine and cannabis (Picture: Cavendish Press)

Ormerod-Beck, of Chester Road, Ellesmere Port, who works in the event catering and IT industry and had never been in trouble with the police before, admitted to an array of charges.

The offences included being concerned in the supply of class B drugs (ketamine) and class A drugs (cocaine), possession with intent to supply class B drugs (cannabis) and class C drugs (nitrous oxide), and not being in proper control of a vehicle.

He was sentenced to five years and four months in prison at Chester Crown Court yesterday. 

The law currently makes production, supply and importation of nitrous oxide for human consumption illegal under Psychoactive Substances Act 2016.

But the Home Office is preparing to introduce a long-expected ban on the sale or possession of nitrous oxide, one of the most popular recreational drugs among young people, as part of a wider crackdown on antisocial behaviour.

Det sgt Stuart Needham, of Cheshire Police, said Ormerod-Beck was a ‘dangerous drug dealer’ (Picture: Cavendish Press)

Detective sergeant Stuart Needham said: ‘Ormerod-Beck showed no regard for the law and put other road users at serious risk.

‘Thankfully, our officers PC Swash and PC Davies stopped him in his tracks before he caused any further damage and, in the process, uncovered thousands of pounds worth of illegal drugs in his possession.

‘This case shows the importance of the police’s power to stop and search people they suspect to be breaking the law.

‘Ormerod-Beck was previously unknown to the police and tried to operate under the radar, but thanks to stop and search powers and the due diligence of our roads policing officers, a dangerous drug dealer is now behind bars and a significant amount of illegal drugs have been removed from our streets.’

Keaton Ormerod-Beck faces five years and four months behind bars for his crimes (Picture: Cavendish Press)

He added: ‘I welcome the sentence handed to Ormerod-Beck today and I hope it demonstrates that drug dealing in Ellesmere Port or elsewhere in Cheshire will not be tolerated.

‘While this investigation has now concluded, our fight against illegal drugs, and those who supply them, continues.

‘Intelligence supplied by members of the public is crucial to this fight and I urge anyone with any information about suspected drug related activity in their community to get in touch.

‘You will be listened to, and we will investigate the matter.’

Discarded nos cylinders are a regular sight on high streets and at festivals, with almost one in ten 16 to 24 year olds admitting to taking the drug in 2019-20.

While supplying nitrous oxide for its psychoactive effects is already illegal under 2016 legislation, the gas has legitimate uses, primarily for the production of whipped cream or for freezing food, and is widely available online.

The planned change to the law would permit the gas to be possessed for legitimate reasons primarily for the production of whipped cream, for freezing food or for being used as pain relief, for example in childbirth.

But a ban is planned for recreational use and supply, which will put nitrous oxide under the same classification as cannabis.

Doctors say the gas can also cause dizziness and impaired memory, as well as accidents from leg weakness.

It can also cause neurological problems by inactivating the vitamin B12 and medics have warned about an increase in spinal cord and nerve damage caused by the drug including paralysis.

Earlier this month, a mum who crashed her car at 103mph while high on nitrous oxide and killed her friend was jailed.

And in May, a study found that the use of laughing gas as a recreational drug is causing nerve damage in teenagers and young adults.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

For more stories like this, check our news page.

Keaton Ormerod-Beck, 25, has been jailed for over five years for multiple drug offences (Picture: Cavendish Press/Cheshire Police)

A huge stockpile of nitrous oxide was uncovered by police after they stopped a man who was taking the drug while driving his car.

Keaton Ormerod-Beck was pulled over by unmarked officers in Cheshire after they spotted him inhaling laughing gas from a blue balloon behind the wheel of his Ford Focus at 10am.

After clocking the 25-year-old’s antics on the A41 in Ellesmere Port, cops stopped and searched the car on March 27 this year.

They came across several used nos cannisters littered around the vehicle and up to £6,000 worth of cannabis resin.

Later that day, police raided a nearby lock-up belonging to Ormerod-Beck and an address he had links to in Little Sutton.

A shocking 48,0000 cannisters of the popular party drug dubbed ‘hippy crack’ were found alongside around £3,785 in cash. 

Two kilos of cocaine and drug paraphernalia was also recovered – and the combined estimated value of the illegal stash was around £61.400.

Ormerod-Beck was illegally stashing 48,000 laughing gas canisters with intent to supply (Picture: Cheshire Police)

The 25-year-old also pleaded guilty to charges relating to the supply of cocaine, ketamine and cannabis (Picture: Cavendish Press)

Ormerod-Beck, of Chester Road, Ellesmere Port, who works in the event catering and IT industry and had never been in trouble with the police before, admitted to an array of charges.

The offences included being concerned in the supply of class B drugs (ketamine) and class A drugs (cocaine), possession with intent to supply class B drugs (cannabis) and class C drugs (nitrous oxide), and not being in proper control of a vehicle.

He was sentenced to five years and four months in prison at Chester Crown Court yesterday. 

The law currently makes production, supply and importation of nitrous oxide for human consumption illegal under Psychoactive Substances Act 2016.

But the Home Office is preparing to introduce a long-expected ban on the sale or possession of nitrous oxide, one of the most popular recreational drugs among young people, as part of a wider crackdown on antisocial behaviour.

Det sgt Stuart Needham, of Cheshire Police, said Ormerod-Beck was a ‘dangerous drug dealer’ (Picture: Cavendish Press)

Detective sergeant Stuart Needham said: ‘Ormerod-Beck showed no regard for the law and put other road users at serious risk.

‘Thankfully, our officers PC Swash and PC Davies stopped him in his tracks before he caused any further damage and, in the process, uncovered thousands of pounds worth of illegal drugs in his possession.

‘This case shows the importance of the police’s power to stop and search people they suspect to be breaking the law.

‘Ormerod-Beck was previously unknown to the police and tried to operate under the radar, but thanks to stop and search powers and the due diligence of our roads policing officers, a dangerous drug dealer is now behind bars and a significant amount of illegal drugs have been removed from our streets.’

Keaton Ormerod-Beck faces five years and four months behind bars for his crimes (Picture: Cavendish Press)

He added: ‘I welcome the sentence handed to Ormerod-Beck today and I hope it demonstrates that drug dealing in Ellesmere Port or elsewhere in Cheshire will not be tolerated.

‘While this investigation has now concluded, our fight against illegal drugs, and those who supply them, continues.

‘Intelligence supplied by members of the public is crucial to this fight and I urge anyone with any information about suspected drug related activity in their community to get in touch.

‘You will be listened to, and we will investigate the matter.’

Discarded nos cylinders are a regular sight on high streets and at festivals, with almost one in ten 16 to 24 year olds admitting to taking the drug in 2019-20.

While supplying nitrous oxide for its psychoactive effects is already illegal under 2016 legislation, the gas has legitimate uses, primarily for the production of whipped cream or for freezing food, and is widely available online.

The planned change to the law would permit the gas to be possessed for legitimate reasons primarily for the production of whipped cream, for freezing food or for being used as pain relief, for example in childbirth.

But a ban is planned for recreational use and supply, which will put nitrous oxide under the same classification as cannabis.

Doctors say the gas can also cause dizziness and impaired memory, as well as accidents from leg weakness.

It can also cause neurological problems by inactivating the vitamin B12 and medics have warned about an increase in spinal cord and nerve damage caused by the drug including paralysis.

Earlier this month, a mum who crashed her car at 103mph while high on nitrous oxide and killed her friend was jailed.

And in May, a study found that the use of laughing gas as a recreational drug is causing nerve damage in teenagers and young adults.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

For more stories like this, check our news page.

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