Another chance for crack dealer, 16

DRUGS police have vowed to continue their war against dealers after snaring a 16-year-old crack cocaine dealer.

The youngster had been breaking up “rocks” of the class A drug, weighing it out and wrapping it in cling film in his mum’s kitchen.

A raid by Hartlepool Police’s drugs unit at the end of last year found more than £2,000-worth of the substance hidden in cups.

The boy, now 17, who cannot be named for legal reasons, admitted possessing a class A drug with intent to supply at Teesside Crown Court and was put on a court order.

Sergeant Daryll Tomlinson, from the Hartlepool Drugs Unit, told the Mail: “Crack cocaine is a highly addictive drug which ruins lives.

“We will work within the heart of communities to bring people who continue to flout the law before the courts, anyone who has information about drug activity in their neighbourhood should contact us.”

Judge George Moorhouse said the boy deserved help after hearing he was starting a new life outside of Hartlepool.

He ordered him to follow a youth rehabilitation order with a supervision requirement for 18 months, to stick to a four-month curfew and carry out 140 hours of unpaid work.

Judge Moorhouse told him: “You are charged with an extremely serious offence.

“You were just 16-years-old at the time and living in difficult home circumstances, were very short of cash and saw this as a way to make money.

“You know that it is justified for anyone of any age who commits an offence of this kind to be given a custodial sentence of a very long time.

“It’s very encouraging that since you have stayed out of trouble things have improved greatly. I think you deserve another chance.

“That may seem very lenient, but because of your age I feel justified in doing it.”

The drugs unit can be contacted on the confidential hotline (01642) 302181.