Heanor drug dealer is jailed

Scales of Justice
Scales of Justice

A drug dealer has been locked up for 12 months for returning to the illicit trade after a 13-year break.

He was caught when police found cannabis resin with a wholesale value of up to £1,050 in a raid on a house in Buxton Avenue, Heanor, a court has heard.

It was occupied by Michael Groves, 56, who got six months in prison when caught in 2000 with cannabis with intent to supply. He had similar convictions going back to 1993.

Judge John Burgess told him: “Some people get one chance and at a push, two chances. You must think you can get away with it and the courts will turn a blind eye.”

Groves admitted having cannabis resin with intent to supply. The drug will be destroyed and he will also lose £140, which police found in the house.

He claimed that he only supplied “family and friends” but the judge commented: “If you were selling it to friends and family you have a lot of friends and family. This was the equivalent of street dealing.”

Quentin Robbins, mitigating, said Groves had financial problems partly caused by the bedroom tax. Probation officers felt he would benefit from going on a course to curb drug use.

“He has cut down considerably since this offence but, due to the pressures of coming to court, there has been a relapse. He lives on his own and has not come to the attention of the police for 13 years.

“He was not a man hanging around street corners or outside schools. People would come to his premises, people he knew,” Mr Robbins told Derby Crown Court.

Alex Wolfson, prosecuting, said a police officer saw a man leaving Groves’ home and searched him.

“A small amount of cannabis was found on his person. Police thought it was strange as he was not local. As a result, the house was searched,” said Mr Wolfson.

Police found 405 grams of cannabis resin and questioned Groves.

Mr Wolfson added: “He volunteered that he had drugs there. He said he had been selling for seven or eight weeks because he was short of money. He thought he made about £450 monthly profit.”