Drug dealer has sen­tence cut

The Oban Times - - News -

AN OBAN drug dealer had a new year bonus when his sen­tence was re­duced by four months in a mat­ter of min­utes.

Stephen Kelly, 52, of Dal­ri­ach Park Ter­race, had pled guilty to the sup­ply of heroin and was duly sen­tenced by Sher­iff John Her­ald last Wed­nes­day in Oban Sher­iff Court.

Ini­tially, Kelly’s sen­tence was 12 months and 63 days of a par­tially-served sen­tence.

But af­ter the sher­iff was asked by Kelly’s so­lic­i­tor Jane McLaren if the sen­tence was un­duly harsh in terms of the tar­iff set be­fore him, Kelly was brought back into the dock and his sen­tence was re­duced to eight months and 63 days.

Sher­iff Her­ald joked: ‘If you wait around for a few more min­utes, I might take an­other four months off.’

Kelly laughed with the sher­iff and said: ‘I might try that.’

Ear­lier pro­ceed­ings for Kelly had not been quite so jovial.

Kelly claimed to have been both us­ing and sub­se­quently sup­ply­ing heroin while try­ing to com­bat a decades- old al­co­hol ad­di­tion.

Po­lice were alerted to the class-A drug be­ing sup­plied from Kelly’s ad­dress and gained a war­rant to search the premises, Procu­ra­tor fis­cal Eoin McGinty told the court last Tues­day morn­ing: ‘A quan­tity of heroin [2.9kgs] was re­cov­ered in one Kin­der Egg.’ An­other half a gram was found on the premises.

Mr McGinty con­tin­ued: ‘ A quan­tity of money was also found on the premises – £ 325 in cash [in one room] and there was an­other amount of £95 at­trib­uted to Kelly.’

Mr McGinty said other items such as dig­i­tal scales and small plas­tic bags were also found on the premises. Kelly at the time of his ar­rest ad­mit­ted to his crimes and the fact he was sell­ing the class-A drug.

De­fence agent Jane McLaren asked the court to con­sider Kelly for a drug treat­ment and test­ing or­der rather than a pe­riod on re­mand.

Ms McLaren said: ‘He is still go­ing to come out [of prison] with the same prob­lem – he needs to try care in the com­mu­nity.

Sher­iff Her­ald said: ‘I have three pages of con­vic­tions be­fore me, yet I have been told your heroin habit and your of­fend­ing is rel­a­tively new.

‘ What con­cerns me is that you were in front of me last year and this is the sec­ond time I have seen you.

‘There is no al­ter­na­tive to a cus­to­dial sen­tence.’

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