Exmouth heroin addict caught with thousands of pounds worth of drugs

PUBLISHED: 13:38 05 May 2019

Michael Gilbert. Picture: Exeter Crown Court

Michael Gilbert. Picture: Exeter Crown Court

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A heroin addict who travelled to London to buy cheaper drugs has been jailed after he sold on his surplus supplies to other users in Devon.

Michael Gilbert was caught with 270 wraps of the drug either with him when police stopped him in March this year.

He claimed he bought the drugs, which had a street value of at least £2,700 for £1,500 and was sharing the cost with a group of four other users in East Devon.

Checks on his car and phone showed he had made 12 trips to London in the space of eight weeks but he said these were either to visit family in Kent or to buy cheap heroin for himself.

Gilbert, aged 41, of Imperial Road, Exmouth, admitted possession of heroin and cocaine with intent to supply and was jailed for two years and four months at Exeter Crown Court.

Judge David Evans said: “There was well over 13 grams of high purity heroin powder and 25 wraps of cocaine and at your home there was the paraphernalia of drug dealing.

“In your interview you claimed, highly implausibly, it was all for your own use. Your basis of plea says you spend £1,500 on the drugs and were making regular trips to London to buy drugs for your own use and were going to supply four other drug users.

“Your role may be described as lesser and towards the bottom of the range but it must be borne in mind that your culpability was raised by you making regular trips to London to buy heroin for your own use.

“There was an advantage to you, although not in a purely financial sense of making a cash profit. You were obtaining your purchase much cheaper than otherwise. There were also more than 100 individually wrapped deals.”

Miss Caroline Bolt, prosecuting, said Gilbert was intercepted with a large amount of heroin as he returned to his home in Exmouth in March.

He said he was buying in bulk for his own use and gave different figures of £650 and £1,500 of how much he paid. He has a previous conviction for drug dealing in Croydon in 2010.

Mr Stephen Nunn, defending, said Gilbert had a £24,000 a year job which involved him travelling around the country. Some of his trips to London had also been to see his family.

He said Gilbert's intention is to get off drugs and lead a law abiding life.

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