FIFTEEN members of a major drugs conspiracy that targeted Carlisle have been given jail terms totalling almost 90 years.

The case is being hailed as the biggest "county lines" drugs plots ever smashed by Cumbria Police, with 16 defendants convicted after either admitting their part in the conspiracy or being convicted following a Carlisle Crown Court trial.

The court heard that the cocaine and heroin dealing operation was controlled by Liverpool man Roy Hickman, 35.

He was given the longest sentence - a total of 14 years and four months.

The next longest sentenced was handed down to Dylan Yates, 25, also from Liverpool. He was jailed for 12 years and six months.

The 11 Cumbrian conspirators were given sentences ranging from 20 months to nearly six years.

Judge Peter Davies said that all of the Cumbrians were to a lesser or greater extent exploited because of their drug addictions.

Many were paid for their help with a free "fix," the court heard.

Yet they played important roles in sustaining the five month conspiracy, including in some cases providing their homes as bases for the drug dealing criminals from Liverpool.

The houses were used for adulterating, and packaging the class A drugs prior to their sale across West Cumbria.

One of the defendants, 29-year-old Sharnee Dawkins, formerly of Crummock Street, Carlisle, will be sentenced at a later date.

She was excused from today's hearing because she is due to give birth

Jail terms:

Roy Hickman, 35, of Churchdown Road, Liverpool; 14 years, five months.

Thomas Wright, 25, of Harefield Road, Liverpool; 10-and-a-half years.

Christopher Westwell, 25, of Round Hey, Knowsley; nine years, nine months.

Dylan Yates, 25, of Boode Croft, Liverpool; 12-and-a-half years.

James Bailey, 20, of Birkrig, Skelmersdale; nine years.

Michael Mandale, 51, of Greystoke, near Penrith; three years, nine months.

Daniel Brennan, 32, previously of Woodside North, Carlisle; four-and-a-half years.

Christopher Cooke, 39, of no fixed address; five years, 219 days.

Connor White, 23, of Eldon Drive, Carlisle; three years.

Joseph Graham, 40, of Borrowdale Gardens, Carlisle; three years.

Peter Bryson, 31, of Castlerigg Drive, Carlisle; three years.

Heather Wills, 36, of Castlerigg Drive, Carlisle; two years, four months.

Storme Abrahams, 32, of Mill Street, Longtown; two years.

Bradley Hickman, 35, of Ellesmere Way, Carlisle; two years.

Leon Kenyon, 48, of Osborne Avenue, Carlisle; one year, eight months.