London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
MR JUSTICE JEREMY BAKER
THE RECORDER OF CARDIFF
(HER HONOUR JUDGE REES)
|R E G I N A|
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"1. I rely on my interview account and the phone download analysed by the Crown. I was not selling Class A drugs for profit but was instead supplying to friends and acquaintances in order to fund my own drug addiction as is demonstrated by the messages on my phone.
2. I was not aware that the taser was a prohibited weapon."
"I will accept that there was a significant degree of supplying to fund your own use, but it does not end there, as the statement of the police officer Mr Jones at page 18 shows. Overall, I take the view that the drugs offending falls into Category 3, street dealing, but very much at the lower end, where the starting point would be in the order of three-and-a-half years' imprisonment."
"The disguised taser is more serious. This is a weapon where I am required to pass a prescribed minimum custodial sentence of five years' imprisonment, unless I find exceptional circumstances for not doing so. By reference to your interview and what I have heard from you today, this was a weapon that you knew to be disguised and offensive and designed, specifically, for causing harm or incapacity. Bought by you, I am entitled to infer, for use in connection with your illicit drug activity. It was bought in circumstances from unknown males, or maybe one who was known, outside a bookmaker. You knew what it was. You knew what it was for and you were prepared to use it, I find, although I accept there is no evidence of it being used. In those circumstances, it is inconceivable, in my view, that you did not know that it was prohibited.
This is a very sad case indeed. You are of good character. You have a supportive family. You have pleaded guilty at what I will accept is the earliest opportunity. I accept your remorse and I have read some very impressive references that have been provided. But, in accordance with the law, I find that there are no exceptional circumstances here for not imposing the minimum sentence."
"His cognitive abilities are significantly impaired and it is possible that he did not understand that the taser that he had bought was dangerous and classed as a firearm."
"It is apparent that the user PAG/1 is involved in the supply of cocaine. He agrees to supply several individuals here, or chases money he is owed by individuals he has supplied. In one message he boasts of being a cocaine supplier, and in others he refers to making himself available to meet drug buyers any time day or night. When amounts are discussed, they are lower amounts of a single gram or less. When monies are mentioned, they are lower amounts - and even when the user references all the monies he is owed, the total is fairly low at £700. It is apparent that this person is also using the drugs, and is likely funding their own habit through the enterprise. The user certainly seems desperate for money judging by the amount of effort he puts into collecting monies owed to him."
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