Drug dealer has sentence cut
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.’