Fareham dealer who had £5,000 of drugs spared jail term

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A DRUG dealer caught with more than £5,000 of cannabis at his home has been spared jail.

Steven Donohoe, 23, turned to dealing to help fund his cannabis habit, Portsmouth Crown Court heard.

Donohoe was caught when police executed a warrant and searched the Hammond Road property in Fareham where he lives with his parents.

Officers found 523.6g of class B cannabis with a street value of up to £5,263.

Police also seized scales and a number of phones as well as £500 in cash from Donohoe.

Officers discovered more than £20,000 in cash in a silver box.

Some of the drugs were found under Donohoe’s mum’s bed.

He was arrested and in his second interview admitted what had happened to police.

Rob Welling, prosecuting, said: ‘The second interview in essence is this – that the drugs were given to him by another.

‘That clearly must be true because he wasn’t growing any on the premises, somebody was supplying him higher up in the chain – that he smokes a lot himself, that he was selling this on behalf of the other in order to fund his cannabis habit, and that he didn’t make any money from it.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard that Donohoe, who is unwell, helps care for his parents, both of whom suffer from ill health, and that he had experienced a ‘dark period’ after suffering seven bereavements including the deaths of six family members and a close friend in the last five years.

Daniel Reilly, defending, Donohoe, said: ‘He has no doubt punished himself for the way in which he has let everyone down.

‘He has done all that he can to try and put matters right and to regain their trust, respect and perhaps even love which may have been missing during that dark period.’

Donohoe admitted possessing a class B drug with intent to supply and possessing £20,566.90 of criminal property.

He was sentenced to 12 months in prison suspended for two years

Donohoe was put under supervision for a year and told to do 200 hours of unpaid work. He must pay £100 to a fund for victims of crime.

Donohoe now faces proceedings under the Proceeds of Crime Act where he could be ordered to back some of his criminal gains.

An order was made for the drugs to be forfeited and destroyed under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.