Teen dealer ran ‘portable shop’
A TEENAGER was running a well-organised cannabis dealing business from his shoulder bag, a court has heard.
When a police officer stopped Ryan Naaif near Swansea Crown Court they found he had a stash of cannabis, empty gripseal bags, weighing scales, cash, and a mobile phone with messages advertising his wares in his shoulder bag.
His subsequent arrest and prosecution is said to have been a wake-up call for the youngster, who was aged 17 at the time.
Swansea Crown Court heard that on the afternoon of September 2, 2017, police were patrolling the area around St Helen’s Road and the court following intelligence suggesting drug dealing was taking place at that location.
Ian Wright, prosecuting, said a PC on foot patrol walking down Brunswick Street noticed three males standing in an alleyway, and went to talk to them.
One of those males was Naaif.
The court heard the officer asked the teenager if he had anything on him which he shouldn’t have, and the suspect replied “weed”.
In Naaif’s shoulder bag the officer found 21 grams of cannabis, a number of empty snapseal plastic bags, some prepared cannabis deals, electronic weighing scales, almost £100 in cash and a black iphone.
The constable arrested the teenager on suspicion of possession of drugs with intent to supply.
Mr Wright said the mobile phone was subsequently examined and found to contain a series of messages relating to drug dealing and the availability of one and half-ounce deals.
One of messages sent by Naaif to his contacts read: “Banging new smoke in, about town now, let me know.”
Naaif, of Milton Street, St Thomas, Swansea, had previously pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis with intent to supply when he appeared in the dock for sentencing.
The court heard he has no previous convictions.
Andrew Evans, for Naaif, said that at the time of the offence the defendant had been “associating with a peer group involved in the supply of controlled substances” but had now turned his life around.
He said: “The events of May 2017 have been a significant wake-up call for him about the path his life was taking.”
Judge Keith Thomas told the defendant he had been caught with a “portable shop for the supply of cannabis”, and had been running a “relatively well-organised and commercial operation”.
The judge said the starting point for sentencing after trial in such a case would have been one of 12 months detention – giving Naaif credit for his guilty plea that was reduced to eight months, and was suspended for 12 months.
The defendant will also have to complete 150 hours of unpaid work.