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Man who took class A drugs into Norfolk prison is jailed

PUBLISHED: 17:31 02 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:31 02 May 2019

HMP Wayland Prison. Picture: Ian Burt

HMP Wayland Prison. Picture: Ian Burt

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A drug addict whose life has been blighted by a 20-year addiction has been jailed after he admitted taking cocaine and heroin into a Norfolk prison.

Eoin Duffy, 38, had gone to HMP Wayland, and while talking to a prisoner he had been visiting was seen to hand a package over to the inmate as they shook hands.

Richard Patterson, prosecuting at Norwich Crown Court, said the inmate had tried to put the package in his pocket but was seen by a prison officer and then tried to put the package up his bottom.

Mr Patterson said prison staff were notified and the package was recovered from the inmate.

The package was found to contain a quantity of cocaine and heroin.

The drugs were analysed and later found to have a combined street value of less than £1,000 although the court heard the value of the drugs was at least twice as much in prison.

Duffy, from East Finchley, north London, appeared in court for sentence on Thursday (May 2) having previously admitted two counts of bringing Class A drugs into prison on August 4 2017.

Jailing him for 16 months Judge Stephen Holt said the court was “well aware” of the problems class A drugs cause when brought into prisons, the violence that results and inmates coming out with “serious drug problems”.

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He said it was a “chronic problem”.

Judge Holt accepted Duffy was “under pressure” at the time of the offence but said people in his position were directed by people higher up the chain.

He said Duffy's life had been “sad” and blighted by 20 years of drug addiction.

Judge Holt said Duffy was “still struggling with it”.

Dan Taylor, mitigating for Duffy, who has 40 previous convictions for 101 offences, said the offences had been committed as he “found himself in debt to the wrong people”.

He said the defendant had been doing what he did as part of that debt.

Mr Taylor said that when he did what he did Duffy was “in fear of his own safety”

He said Duffy's case was an “all too familiar story” for a man who was still a “fairly young man”.

He said: “A young man addicted to class A drugs for over 20 years.”

Mr Taylor said Duffy's first conviction for being in possession of class A drugs was back in 1997 when he was just 17.

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