Man living in car found with stash of illegal drugs

Police outside student accommodation in Stanhope Road, Portsmouth on Friday Picture Ben Fishwick

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A HOMELESS man caught red-handed with drugs claimed he was looking after them in exchange for living in his friend’s car.

Jamie King was busted after police conducted a stop-search of the vehicle in Waterlooville while he and his girlfriend were inside.

Inside officers found 135g of class B amphetamine sulphate and 8.74g of class A cocaine.

They also found a white powder which tests later revealed to be 1.39g of powdered caffeine – a substance that is sometimes cut with illegal drugs to lessen their purity.

And they found dextrose, which can also be used as a cutting agent.

King, 22, produced a small wrap of cannabis from his tracksuit trousers during the search, which happened at about 10pm on December 7.

The value of the drugs is not known as they were not tested for purity.

Stephen Clayton, defending King, said: ‘At the time of the offence, he and his girlfriend were homeless.

‘They were living out of the back of a borrowed car in which, to support their contention, the police found all their clothing.

‘He was not working – at the time he had not been in work for a week and had no money.

‘Had he gone to the employment exchange he would have had to have registered and would not have had any money because the application would still be being processed.

‘In return for lending them the car the owner of it had asked the defendant to look after the drugs which are the subject of the charge.

‘They were to be returned to him, the owner, but as the defendant said in interview, if he had found a buyer he could sell to them.’

King, from Lambert Close, Purbrook, pleaded guilty to two counts of drug possession with intent to supply at Portsmouth Crown Court in relation to the cocaine and amphetamine.

He also admitted one charge of possessing cannabis.

King was sentenced to nine months in jail, suspended for 18 months.

He was also ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work and pay £400 in court costs.

Judge Sarah Munro, QC, sentencing, said: ‘If you keep out of trouble and don’t commit any other offence you won’t be required to serve that sentence.’

Judge Munro made an order for the drugs to be forfeited and destroyed, along with the caffeine and dextrose.