Dealer caught with cannabis supply on Tunstall High Street: Robert Owen jailed for 12 months
CANNABIS dealer Robert Owen has been jailed for 12 months after being caught by police with a 'significant' amount of the drug.
The 32-year-old was stopped and searched by a police officer in Tunstall High Street at 1am on October 26.
Prosecutor Rebecca Wade told Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court, Owen was found in possession of £1,200 cash and nine re-sealable bags of cannabis weighing a total of 12.6 grams. He also had four empty bags and money bags.
Owen was arrested and police later searched an address in Henry Street, Tunstall, where they found a large amount of cannabis and equipment to grow the drug.
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Miss Wade said: "There were nine re-sealable bags of cannabis, a further nine bags in another bucket and three large bags of cannabis.
"In total there was 534.81 grams of cannabis with a minimum street value of £2,915."
The court heard a notebook which contained instructions on how to dry cannabis was also recovered.
Owen, of Pinnox Street, Tunstall, pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis with intent to supply.
Scott Ashdown, mitigating, said Owen had been addicted to cannabis for many years.
"The addiction grew over time and needed to be sustained in some way," said Mr Ashdown.
"The text activity over the space of a month showed nine or 10 recipients.
"He fully accepts it had been going on for three or four months.
"He accepts there would have been an element of financial gain."
Mr Ashdown questioned whether the custodial sentence had to be immediate.
But Judge Paul Glenn said a significant amount of cannabis was recovered and the text messages showed Owen was dealing substantial amounts.
Jailing Owen for 12 months, Judge Glenn said: "You were stopped in the early hours and were found with some cannabis resin and a significant quantity of cash.
"Subsequent searches led to significant amounts of cannabis, over half a kilo, divided in the main into one ounce bags, which if sold by the ounce, was worth about £3,000.
"Texts show you were selling cannabis by the ounce. It is plain there was regular dealing going on."
The judge said the people Owen sold to were already cannabis users.
But he added: "Yours was a significant role motivated by financial advantage. It persisted over a significant time scale, selling at street level to users.
"It is so serious only a custodial sentence can be merited."