A YOUNG drug dealer is starting his first jail term after a judge spent the weekend “reflecting on the sentence” he would pass in the case.

Cameron Black previously admitted possessing cocaine with intent to supply, plus simple possession of ecstasy, both class A drugs, and possession of the class B substance, ketamine.

He was scheduled to be sentenced at Durham Crown Court, last Friday.

After mitigation by Black’s counsel, Paul Rooney, as to the extent of his dealing, suggesting a suspended sentence may be appropriate in the case, Judge Ray Singh adjourned the hearing until yesterday to ponder on the sentence he would impose.

But he remanded the 21-year-old defendant, of Bessemer Street, Ferryhill, in custody over the weekend until yesterday.

Jonathan Harley, prosecuting, told Friday’s hearing that police observed a Toyota Yaris being driven erratically in Church Lane, Ferryhill, at 3.15am on June 27, last year.

It was seen being parked and Black walked away.

On his return he was detained and a red bum bag was seized by the officers.

Mr Harley said on examination eight snap bags were found in the bag, containing a total weight of 2.79g of cocaine, plus five bags of ecstasy and one of ketamine.

Black was arrested and found to be in possession of £170, while, in a search of his home, more ketamine and snap bags were found.

Mr Rooney said since the offence the defendant has almost finished a tool-making apprenticeship, with a full-time job awaiting.

He conceded the defendant made, “a serious error of judgement”, but it was to help meet gambling debts.

Judge Singh said, “to all intents and purposes,” Black has been a, “decent, hard-working individual,”

But he said: “There can only be one reason you were dealing, in order to achieve a financial benefit, through your own difficulties, debts you were trying to overcome.

“You have had the benefit of a good upbringing and you are an educated and intelligent individual who knows the misery of class A drugs, but who supplies others.

“That is a thought process of which you must have been fully aware because you were using these drugs on a regular basis.”

He imposed an immediate 28-month prison sentence, having reduced it by a third, from 42 months, because of Black’s early guilty pleas.

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