Falkirk court jails man for drug deal that could have netted him £15,000

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Police recovered cocaine worth at least £15,000 from Jamie Hughes’ car.

At Falkirk Sheriff Court on March 10 the 28-year-old was jailed for two years and four months after pleading guilty to being concerned in the supply of the Class A drug.

Sheriff Craig Caldwell was told the bar of cocaine found in the motor would have cost between £4000 to £5000 – but broken down into ‘deals’ sold in individual bags it had a street value of anything between £15,000 and £58,000.

Hughes, a self-employed joiner, was charged on indictment that between November 2013 and December 2014 at various locations in Grangemouth and elsewhere he was selling the drug.

But after pleading guilty when he appeared in court last December and having sentence deferred for background, reports he told social workers he had been “dealing” for one day only.

Sheriff Caldwell said Hughes’ explanation to them was “not consistent” with the plea he had tendered, but defence lawyer Neal McShane, made it clear: “While he does not accept the social work report, he admits being involved in the supply of cocaine and he has never denied that.”

Mr McShane said Hughes accepted it was a “serious matter” and well aware of the sentence options.

He added: “He is under no illusions. He comes from a law-abiding family and knows he has let them and himself down.

“He has no history of offending and there has been no further offending. He has been in a stable relationship for two years and he and his partner have had a child. He has a good work record and set up his own business as a joiner.”

Sheriff Caldwell told Hughes, from Nevis Avenue in Hamilton, that he had listened carefully to what his lawyer had said - and was prepared to accept the offence was committed on one day.

He also said he noted his “domestic, social and employment” situation, but added: “None the less, these drugs had a value of at least £15,000 and according to the Crown that value was potentially much higher.

“It’s clear you were actively involved in a very significant commercial enterprise in the Falkirk and Grangemouth area that day and that requires to be dealt with by way of a commensurate sentence.”

The sheriff said that due to Hughes’ early guilty plea the jail term of two years and four months had been discounted from the three year term he was entitled to impose.