Judge spares drug dealer jail so he can care for his family

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A DRUG dealer walked free from a court after a judge commended him for looking after his family.

Alan Cain-Ogden bought cannabis in bulk and sold small amounts to regular customers, Durham Crown Court heard.

Martin Towers, prosecuting, said: “Police executed a search warrant at his home in Lowther Close, Peterlee.

“They found 26g of cannabis resin valued at £114, and 5g of cannabis bush valued at £34.

“Cain-Ogden was frank with police, saying he would get a 9oz bar of cannabis on tick.

“He would sell to regular customers, using the proceeds to pay for the bar and keeping any profit for himself. Police also found £600 in cash, for which he has signed a disclaimer.” Cain-Ogden, 26, admitted possessing a class B drug with intent to supply it on September 25 last year, but the case was adjourned for the probation service to prepare a report about him.

Neil Bennett, defending, cut short his mitigation when Judge Christopher Prince said he would suspend any prison sentence.

Cain-Ogden was sentenced to eight months in prison, suspended for a year, and a supervision order for a year.

Judge Prince told him: “The question in your case is whether your sentence can be suspended. From reading your very honest pre-sentence report, I accept you have had bereavement issues following the death of your parents.

“You have since taken great care of your siblings. Not many people would dedicate themselves so much to the care of their family.”

He added: “You also have a two-year-old daughter who needs a father, which she won’t have if you are in prison.

“You were frank with police and pleaded guilty.

“Taking all matters into consideration, I can suspend the appropriate sentence.”

Cain-Ogden was ordered to pay costs of £535 and a £100 victim surcharge.

The drugs found in his house were confiscated and will be destroyed.