A drug dealer who was caught with cannabis hidden in his car when he was stopped by police has walked free from court.

Connor Weller had drugs paraphernalia seized alongside mobile phones and £250 cash when he was arrested in July 2021 when he was driving through Darlington.

Teesside Crown Court heard how analysis of the 28-year-old’s mobile showed evidence of his low-level drug dealing.

Annelise Haugstad, prosecuting, said officers discovered the cannabis in a blue box in the car while the recovered £150 from a drawer under the car seat and a further £200 from his wallet.

She said: “When the police told him he was going to be searched, he pointed to a bag in the footwell where he had stored some cannabis.

“The vehicle was searched and a plastic box containing a quantity of cannabis was found and two blue sandwich bags containing cannabis, the remnants of cannabis and a grinder.

“He indicated there was some more cannabis in the car door and a further three sandwich bags, scales and empty grip seal bags were found.”

Weller, of Albion Avenue, Shildon, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply Class drugs namely cannabis.

Cainan Lonsdale, mitigating, said his client had been doing well on a community order imposed for unrelated offending and urged the judge to follow the recommendations in his pre-sentence report.

He added: “He accepts that he was a drug user at the time of the offence.”

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Recorder Thomas Moran sentenced Weller to a 12-month community order with an additional 150 hours of unpaid work.

He added: “Your car was stopped and cannabis was found along with other items indicating that you were engaged in supplying at a relatively low-level.

“£350 in cash was seized and your phone was analysed and it was obvious really what you were up to.”

The judge ordered the destruction of the drugs and paraphernalia and told Weller he would pay £150 towards court costs.