Weed dealer narrowly avoids jail

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A Wigan cannabis dealer who was incriminated by messages on his mobile phone has narrowly escaped going to jail.

Scott Monks received a 12-month prison sentence but a judge suspended it for two years.

He also ordered the 33-year-old to attend 15 days of rehabilitation activities and to carry out 200 hours’ unpaid work.

The judge, Recorder Simon Parrington, told him: “There is no excuse for this offence and if you do it again you will find yourself going away straight away.”

Monks, of Sandway, Beech Hill, had pleaded guilty to being concerned in supplying cannabis.

Henry Riding, prosecuting, told the Liverpool Crown Court hearing that Monks was arrested in April 2015 for handling stolen goods, for which he has already been sentenced.

His telephone was seized at that time and, after this revealed text messages about drug-dealing, he was re-arrested later the same month and a key to his Audi car parked nearby was seized.

When the vehicle was searched, a total of £540 cash was found in two places in it along with a further mobile phone.

This also showed incriminating text messages dating back four months, said Mr Riding.

The court heard that Monks pleaded guilty on the basis that he had been supplying the drug to close friends and acquaintances.

He was a cannabis-user and, as he made “a modest profit,” he accepted that there was a commercial element to his behaviour.

Ian Morris, defending, pointed out that, before his arrest in 2015, Monks had had no previous convictions for drugs offences.

He received a six-month suspended sentence for the handling matter and has been engaging well with the probation service, the hearing was told.

There was no suggestion he is a drug addict and he has had the case hanging over him for a long time, he added.