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Dealer is caught after four days

Dealer is caught after four days

Andrew Small

Andrew Small

First published in Didcot by

A teenager caught with 126 wraps of drugs in his pants had “only been dealing for about four days”.

Andrew Small was arrested as part of a police operation as he rode his bike through Didcot.

The 19-year-old was found with 47.5g of drugs, including 81 wraps of crack cocaine, four wraps of cocaine and 41 wraps of heroin, at about 8pm on November 3.

He was sentenced at Oxford Crown Court on Monday having earlier admitted three counts of possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply.

Prosecutor Paul Harrison said Small, of The Oval, Didcot, was co-operative with officers and told them ‘it’s in my pants, I’ll give you all of it’.

The drugs were worth about £2,270 and Small had £380 in cash on him.

Mr Harrison said: “He told officers he had been dealing for about four days, and that he did it because he found it was easy money.”

Lucy Tapper, defending, said the case was “quite unusual in many respects”, telling the court her client had never touched drugs and that Small showed “a marked level of naïveté”.

She said Small had lost his job in July and turned to dealing drugs after becoming frustrated at the way he was treated by employment agencies.

Miss Tapper said Small had been negatively influenced by a friend who lived next door. The friend had pointed him in the direction of drug dealing as a way of making easy money.

She added: “To say he’s remorseful is almost an understatement. He is very embarrassed, he’s very ashamed.”

Judge Christopher Compston said he was troubled by trying to fit the case into sentencing guidelines.

He said: “If I radically departed from the guidelines and, as per their duty, the prosecution go to the Court of Appeal – I don’t mind personally what the Court of Appeal do – but if they then sentence him to prison the trauma to him and his family will be worse.”

Judge Compston eventually sentenced Small to 18 months in a young offenders’ institution.

He said: “I make it absolutely clear that I’m impressed by your mitigation.

“If I were an independent judge I would undoubtedly not send you to prison.

“But it seems to me I am to some extent bound by the guidelines.”

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