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Man acting as drugs runner in Great Yarmouth jailed for more than three years

PUBLISHED: 12:38 04 April 2018 | UPDATED: 14:08 04 April 2018

Damien Laverick was sentanced to 3 years 7 months in a young offenders institution. Picture: Norfolk Constabulary

Damien Laverick was sentanced to 3 years 7 months in a young offenders institution. Picture: Norfolk Constabulary

Norfolk Constabulary

A 20-year-old dealer was acting as a “runner” selling heroin and crack cocaine on the streets of Great Yarmouth, a court heard.

Damien Laverick, was caught after he was observed by police officers passing on the drugs in “hand to hand” exchanges with other known drug users in the town on three separate occasions, Norwich Crown Court heard.

John Morgans, prosecuting, said that Laverick was arrested for the drug offences in Temple Road on February 6, this year.

Laverick of Waterloo Road, Great Yarmouth, was sentenced to three years seven months in a young offenders institution for possessing crack cocaine and heroin with intent to supply, possession of Class A drugs and possession of a knife.

Laverick also admitted a bail act offence when he failed to turn up for a court appearance and was arrested in Victoria Road, Lowestoft, on March 15 this year. When searched the court heard he was found in possession of a sheath knife with a six inch blade and was also found to have had £1000 cash on him.

Sentencing him, Judge Anthony Bate accepted his role had been that of a “street runner” for others higher up the chain of supply in the drugs operation.

“Observations by officers saw you making hand to hand exchanges with known users,”

He added: “It is you that ran the risks.”

He said that when arrested a quantity of crack cocaine and heroin was seized.

Lori Tucker, for Laverick, said he was acting as a runner to pay off a drugs debt to those higher up the chain.

“He was caught between the devil and deep blue sea.”

She said he was responsible for the loss of any drugs and said: “He had a debt because drugs were seized from him. He lost the drugs and it is his responsibilty. He has to pay off the debt.”

She said he deserved full credit for his guilty pleas.

The arrest of Laverick was said by police at the time to be part of Operation Gravity, a Norfolk police clampdown on drug offences in the county.

A confiscation hearing to claw back any cash from the drug dealing operation is set to be heard at the crown court on June 20, this year.

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