Drug addict jailed for dealing crack cocaine to undercover police officer
PUBLISHED: 15:09 18 September 2018 | UPDATED: 08:23 19 September 2018
A drug addict who sold crack cocaine to an undercover police officer has been sentenced to more than two years in prison.
James Newton, 27, of no fixed address, appeared at Norwich Crown Court charged with supplying class A drugs.
He dealt the substance to an officer with the code name Tommo, during Operation Granary, a Norfolk police operation targeting county lines networks bringing heroin and crack cocaine in to the region.
Chris Youell, prosecuting, told the court Newton was released from Wayland Prison in 2017, where he had served a 12-month sentence.
While on licence he reoffended by supplying the substance to the undercover officer, the court heard.
He was not arrested at the time as the undercover operation was still ongoing, but shortly after the offence he was jailed for driving while disqualified.
He was arrested at the gate under Operation Granary on his subsequent release, immediately after leaving prison.
Robert Pollington, mitigating, said Newton had “declined into the grips of a terrible addiction”, describing the defendant’s drug use as “long standing”.
He said “[He] was asked to sell some as one singular transaction.”
He added that it was “not in his nature” to help others procure drugs.
Mr Pollington told the court Newton had a “refreshed attitude to his drug use” and was prescribed Nalorex, a prescription inhibitor for opiate use.
The defendant had attended a detoxification programme, the court heard.
Mr Youell added that as Newton had been involved in drugs primarily as a user, and that there was no suggestion he had made a great deal of money from the sale, the crown would not seek proceeds of crime.
Newton admitted the offence.
Judge Bate, presiding, said the defendant was “in the grips of class A drug addiction and you were then using Class A drugs on a daily basis.”
He added: “To your credit, on remand you put your time to very good use”.
He described the Norwich man as having “an unenviable criminal record” of 21 previous convictions for 56 offences and sentenced him to 30 months imprisonment, with credit for plea, and accepted that he was involved to a lesser extent.