Exmouth man had £5,000 coke for his own use

Exeter Crown Court. Picture: Archant

Exeter Crown Court. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

A decorator with a £700-a-day cocaine habit sold his van and bought almost £5,000 worth of the drug in bulk, only to have it all seized in a police raid.

Justin Stamp had nearly 100 grams of cocaine hidden in a safe and under his mattress when police searched his home in Exmouth.

Officers also found snap bags and a dealer’s list in the safe in his bedroom but he said they belonged to someone else and his explanation was accepted.

Stamp, aged 39, now of Fore Street, Topsham, admitted personal possession of cocaine and cannabis and was jailed for six months, suspended for two years and ordered to 80 hours unpaid community work and pay £425 costs by Judge Peter Johnson at Exeter Crown Court.

He told him: “When police entered your property, they found what looked very like a dealer’s den, on the face of it.

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“You were charged with simple possession rather than having an intent to supply even though the quantity was remarkably high.

“Your basis of plea makes it clear it was for your own personal use as a result of you having an enormous appetite for cocaine at the time.”

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Miss Emily Pitts, prosecuting, said police raided Stamp’s former home in The Green, Exmouth, on September 21, 2017, and found a total of 98 grams of cocaine and a small amount of cannabis.

The cocaine, which had a street value of at least £4,900, was in a safe and in a bag under the mattress. There was also £742 cash, although some was in an envelope marker ‘rent’.

There was also a diary and a ‘tick list’ which appeared to show how much customers owed for drugs, but he said they belonged to someone else who had left the safe at his home.

Miss Felicity Payne, defending, said that in the 16 months since his arrest Stamp has stopped using drugs and is now working as a painter and decorator.

She asked the judge to take into account a probation report which said at the time he and his partner had a £700-a-day cocaine habit which led him to spend the £6,000 proceeds of selling his van to buy in bulk.

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