Coke-dealing Sunderland mum-of-two jailed after routine traffic offence exposed lucrative drug business

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A DRUG-dealing mum is behind bars after a broken tail-light on her Mercedes led to her lucrative cocaine business being exposed.

Dawn Joyce lived in a plush three-bedroomed home kitted out with high end furniture, despite earning just £70 per week from a part-time job.

Dawn Joyce

Dawn Joyce

The 42-year-old was pulled over on Ryhope Road in Sunderland last November for a routine stop when officers noticed the rear light on her luxury car was not working.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the traffic stop revealed she was slightly over the drink-drive limit and led to officers finding a small amount of cocaine and amphetamine in her handbag – plus a further stash of the class A drug along with debtors lists and cutting agents in her home.

Prosecutor Emma Dowling told the court: “The defendant lives in a nicely appointed three-bedroomed house with all the trappings. There was a television in every room, nice furniture.

“There was two bedrooms on the upper floor and a loft conversion in the roof. It is clear the house could not have been kept had she not resorted to drug dealing.”

The court heard search officers found the drug haul in a drawer next to her bed along with small self-seal plastic bags and three “tick lists”.

They found another, smaller quantity of cocaine in the bathroom. Miss Dowling added: “What the crown say is the tick lists kept for drugs show that this defendant was actively involved in the money side of the transactions as well as delivery of drugs.

“The crown do not say this is necessarily her sole operation but what the crown do say is she is involved at a significant level in dealing,”

Joyce, of Palmstead Road, Sunderland, admitted driving with excess alcohol, possession of amphetamine and possession of cocaine with intent to supply.

Judge Penny Moreland jailed the mum-of-two to 32 months behind bars.

Judge Moreland told her: “There was just short of 17g of cocaine from your person and from your house, the house where I understand you to be saying you lived alone. It is clear from what was found, someone on the premises was using cocaine.

“The items necessary for the weighing, cutting and packing of cocaine and financial records suggested you were responsible, in some part, for taking money for drugs and arranging for the drugs to be paid for.”

Yvonne Taylor, defending, said Joyce is currently going through a divorce and faces the prospect of losing her home due to mortgage arrears.