Sunderland dealer had drugs hidden in his socks

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A STREET dealer was caught when police found his drugs stash hidden in his socks.

Officers had received a tip-off that Tony Ho, 30, was dealing drugs in the Hendon area of Sunderland, so they stopped and searched him when they saw him in the street.

Crown prosecutor Paul Rowland told Newcastle Crown Court: “Several small, clear bags of white powder, found to be amphetamine, were down his socks.”

The court heard a total of 41 grammes of the class B drug, with a street value of about £200, were recovered from Ho during the search.

Mr Rowland added: “His telephone was examined.

“There were text messages on the phone which indicated he was dealing.

“At the time, Mr Ho declined to answer any questions regarding the circumstances in which he came to be in possession of the drugs.”

Ho, of The Knoll, off Western Hill, Sunderland, admitted a charge of possession of amphetamine with intent to supply.

Vic Laffey, defending, said Ho was selling to pay off a debt to a dealer.

Mr Laffey told the court: “He owed a significant amount of money to a dealer, and was given an opportunity that this was a way he could get to repay that money.

“He was selling drugs on for the same dealer.”

Mr Laffey said Ho was already “familiar with” the people he was selling to.

Judge James Goss sentenced Ho to eight months’ imprisonment, suspended for two years, with probation service supervision and a four-month 9pm to 7am curfew.

The judge told Ho: “On this occasion you were caught red- handed, essentially, in the possession of amphetamine you were clearly in the process of preparing to supply onto others, as revealed by the text messages on your phone.”

He added: “You had become quite a regular supplier of amphetamine to users who wanted to misuse that particular controlled drug.”

The judge said Ho’s guilty plea and frankness since his arrest meant the jail term could be suspended.