Student 'turned life around' after drugs arrest

CHRISTINE CUNNINGHAM A student was spared an immediate jail term so he can carry on his studies after he was found trying to sell cannabis at an illegal rave in Thetford forest, a court heard.

CHRISTINE CUNNINGHAM

A student was spared an immediate jail term so he can carry on his studies after he was found trying to sell cannabis at an illegal rave in Thetford forest, a court heard.

UEA student Benjamin Bissett, 22, was stopped by police after an officer noticed a smell of cannabis in his car as he tried to go to a rave in the forest on June 24 last year, Norwich Crown Court was told.

Lori Tucker, prosecuting, said Bissett admitted he had eight bags of herbal cannabis and a search of his car found a further bag of cannabis and £500 in cash as well as scales.


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Mrs Tucker said the street value of the cannabis he planned to sell was about £400 and he intended to supply it to close friends.

Bissett, who lives in the student residences at the UEA, admitted possession of cannabis with intent to supply and possession of the drug for his own use.

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However, after hearing he had since turned his life around, settled down to his studies and stopped taking cannabis, Recorder Simon Spence spared him an immediate jail term.

Instead he imposed a 12 month custodial sentence suspended for two years and ordered him to do 200 hours unpaid work. He also confiscated the £500 cash.

The recorder said: “Smoking cannabis or providing cannabis for your friends to smoke is not something the courts or society treats lightly.”

He added: “Your future is in your hands the court is giving you a chance.”

Charles Judge mitigating said Bissett had now settled down to his studies and stopped smoking cannabis.

“He seems to have put his life back on track,” he added.

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