Drug dealer jailed for five years

PUBLISHED: 11:54 13 July 2006 | UPDATED: 10:25 06 May 2010

A MAN with a 15-year drug habit has been jailed for five years for drug dealing. When police swooped on a house in Dunlin, Letchworth GC, which they suspected of being a crack den, they found Matthew Burton sitting at a table with a set of scales and drug

A MAN with a 15-year drug habit has been jailed for five years for drug dealing.

When police swooped on a house in Dunlin, Letchworth GC, which they suspected of being a crack den, they found Matthew Burton sitting at a table with a set of scales and drugs in front of him, a court heard.

"He was strip searched, which is normal," said prosecutor Jonathan Ingram, "and then asked to squat, at which point a plastic package containing 89 wraps of drugs fell from between his buttocks."

Mr Ingram told Luton Crown Court last week that the drugs were 48 wraps of crack cocaine and 41 of heroin, altogether worth up to £2,000 on the street.

Burton, 35, of Ashbourne Close, Letchworth GC, was arrested but made no comment in interview.

At court he pleaded not guilty to two charges of possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply, but was convicted after a trial by unanimous verdicts.

He claimed he had gone to the house to buy drugs in bulk for his £50 a day habit. When police burst in he panicked and tried to conceal his purchase inside his underwear.

Will Noble, defending, said: "The prosecution suggest he was a low level street dealer but he still maintains his innocence.

"But he has been on remand for 10 months and there has been a dawning light, and he is now drug free."

Judge Michael Kay QC told Burton: "The offences are serious because dealing drugs has an impact on the lives of many people.


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