Seaside drug dealer jailed after £9,000 worth of drugs found in hotel room

PUBLISHED: 14:02 29 August 2019 | UPDATED: 14:06 29 August 2019

David Kerr has been jailed after admitting to drug offences at Exeter Crown Court. Picture: Archant/Humberside police.

David Kerr has been jailed after admitting to drug offences at Exeter Crown Court. Picture: Archant/Humberside police.

Archant

A drug dealing tourist has been jailed after police found £9,000 cash and heroin and crack worth £5,500 in his hotel room in Exmouth.

David Kerr travelled from Liverpool to Devon to try to pay off a debt to a gang which he had run up through his own crack cocaine addiction.

Police found his hotel key and phone when they raided a drugs den in Exeter and recovered the huge stash of money and street-wrapped drugs in a holdall in his room.

He had booked the room in a false name and fled when he realised the police were searching it.

He was identified by his fingerprints and DNA on the wrappings and details on a second phone which was found in the holdall.

Kerr went on the run after giving police the slip in Exmouth in October 2017 but was caught a month later while dealing more drugs in Hull.

Officers had to smash the driver's window of a stolen Freelander in which he was caught with £310 worth of heroin and crack and £60 cash.

Kerr, aged 30, of Woodlands Square, Liverpool, admitted two counts of possession of class A drugs with intent to supply and one of possession of criminal property.

He was jailed for two years by Judge Peter Johnson at Exeter Crown Court on Thursday (August 29).

He will serve the sentence after finishing a four-year term imposed at Hull Crown Court in March last year.

Judge Johnson told Kerr: "You were found with a considerable quantity of heroin, £9,000 cash and what could be described as a typical drug dealer's paraphernalia. I have to look at the totality of the two cases and this amounts to a six year sentence in all.

"I am pleased to hear you have made progress in prison and hope that on your release you will lead a law-abiding life."

Felicity Payne, prosecuting, said police raided a drug user's home in Heath Road, Exeter, on October 9, 2017, because they thought it was being used for dealing.

They found a knuckle duster, an iPhone with drugs messages, and a hotel key in Kerr's coat on the floor.

Officers then searched his room at the Ashton Court Hotel at Louisa Terrace, Exmouth.

They seized a holdall in the wardrobe with £9,030 cash, 12.9 grams of heroin and 35.3 grams of crack inside. Most of the drugs were divided into small wraps, ready for street dealing.

Miss Payne said: "The room had been booked by a male using a different name but police believed it was in fact this defendant.

"He was seen arriving back while the police were there but was not detained. His identity was confirmed by forensic testing which showed his DNA on the inside and outside of the wrappings.

"He was heavily involved in dealing, he must have been trusted by others in the organisation, and this was not a small enterprise."

Vivya Puri, defending, said Kerr was pressured into dealing because he owed £6,000 to a Liverpool drug gang as a result of a crack cocaine addiction.

He was ordered to sell drugs in Devon and then moved on to Hull and the cost of the drugs and cash seized in Devon were added to his debt.

The court heard that he had stopped using drugs for the first time since he was 17 while in custody and is retraining so he can work in catering and support his partner and young child when he is released.

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