Dealer's 'laughable' claim that £32,000 smorgasbord of drugs found at Leeds home were for personal use

A dealer who caught with an array of drugs at his girlfriend’s home was told by a court judge his claims they were all for him was “laughable”.
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James Reynolds eventually abandoned his claim when it was found that the crack cocaine, heroin, MDMA and cannabis was worth more than £32,000. Officers found weighing scales, cutting agents, dealer bags, £2,200 in cash, seven phones and a press to package the drugs when they searched the premises. They also found messages on a phone offering free drugs to those who brought new customers to him.

He was jailed for 52 months at Leeds Crown Court after admitting three counts of dealing ion class A drugs, and being concerned in the production of class B drugs - the cannabis.

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Prosecutor Jade Bucklow said officers had gone to Reynolds’ partner’s home on Colliery Close, Allerton Bywater, in the early hours of January 30 last year, for an unrelated matter. Reynolds was present and was arrested.

Reynolds was jailed for 52 months at Leeds Crown Court. (pic by WYP)Reynolds was jailed for 52 months at Leeds Crown Court. (pic by WYP)
Reynolds was jailed for 52 months at Leeds Crown Court. (pic by WYP)

The property was searched and they found 29 grammes of cocaine worth £2,950, 105 grammes of MDMA worth £4,220 and 77 grammes of heroin worth £3,890. They also found 4.2kg of cannabis. Plants were found hanging from the roof in the loft to dry out. Reynolds said his partner had nothing to do with the drugs and that they were for his personal use.

The 31-year-old then admitted the charges, but on a basis of plea that he was simply the custodian for someone else’s drugs, which was later withdrawn, Miss Bucklow said. He has 20 previous convictions for 37 offences and has served lengthy jail sentences for burglaries. He only has one previous drug conviction, for a simple possession of cannabis.

Mitigating, Timothy Jacobs told the court that Reynolds “knew” it would be an immediate prison sentence. He said he has been diagnosed with bipolar and was being treated for anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

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He said: “None of this is an excuse for what he did. None of that goes to explain his conduct but it does make him more vulnerable and makes his time in prison a difficult one.”

He said that Reynolds, of Ossett, had been behind bars since his arrest last year but had been taking courses in prison and was working for a charity. Mr Jacobs added: “He is trying to do better and make the most of the time.”

Judge Robin Mairs told Reynolds: “You submitted, laughably, in interview it was for personal use. It was professional and commercial. It was not merely a user to fund their habit, you were a professional class A drugs tradesman. You understood the gravity of it all.”

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