Drug dealer sold heroin to pay for girlfriend's IVF treatment

Newcastle Crown Court
Newcastle Crown Court
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A broody dealer who sold drugs to pay for IVF treatment for his girlfriend in the hope he could become a father has been jailed.

Steven Lowes and his partner had "exhausted all avenues through the NHS" to have a baby together, so he took to the streets and sold heroin to fund their dream.

The 33-year-old was arrested after he crashed his car into a taxi on August 23 last year.

He fled his vehicle and left his partner inside, and police found wraps of heroin and thousands of pounds in cash in the motor.

More drugs, cash and self-seal bags were found when police raided his home.

Lowes was arrested and bailed, but five days later a police officer, who he knew from school, pulled over his Peugeot and found yet more cash and drugs.

The dealer confessed: "I've got loads of heroin on me" during the stop.

Newcastle Crown Court heard a total of £10,800-worth of heroin was recovered and £6,370 in cash.

Lowes, of Kier Hardy Street, Highfield, Rowlands Gill, admitted two charges of possessing a class A drug with intent to supply.

Rachel Hedworth, defending, said Lowes, who has been in trouble before but never supplied drugs, turned to dealing to get cash so he and his girlfriend could have a baby.

"It was borne out of desperation to be able to have a child with his partner, who he has extremely strong feelings for.

"They had, as a couple, in effect exhausted all avenues through the NHS to see if they would be eligible for some form of IVF.

"It was a cause of distress they were unable to have a child.

"He then took the extremely foolish decision to become involved, for a matter of weeks, in supplying heroin.

"It is something he bitterly regrets, and asks me to convey his complete remorse today."

The court heard Lowes' partner already has two children, who treat him as a father.

Mr Recorder Ben Nolan QC jailed Lowes for 40 months.

He told him: "The offences were committed in August last year. On the second occasion you had already been bailed and you were on bail in respect of the first offences, while it was being investigated.

"That seems to me to indicate you are someone who set out to deal in class A drugs simply to make money.

"You were not deterred by being arrested on the first occasion.

"The amount in total of diamorphine you were in possession of is 421.5g, valued at street level of around £10,800.

"In addition, you were in possession of £6,370 in cash, a clear indicator you were a busy dealer of class A drugs."