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Drug dealer escapes jail ‘by a whisker’

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Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 14.22.58MAGISTRATES told a former part-time scaffolder that ‘drug dealing is a very serious crime‘, and that he was ‘a whisker‘ from going to prison, at Aberystwyth Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (Aug 3).

Jorden Patrick Davis Allen, 18, of London House in Borth, pleaded guilty to three offences of threatening and abusive behaviour on July 5 at Borth, with intent to cause unlawful violence.

He also pleaded guilty to both possessing, with intent to supply, 22.5 g of controlled cannabis and possessing 0.08g of psilocin, a controlled Class A drug, on December 5 , 2015. Due to the psilocin being a small amount, Magistrates withdrew the offence.

Prosecutor Ellie Morgan told the court that the defendant used cannabis for several years as self-medication, but with no intent to sell.

With regards to the drug offences, at 0.30am, officers were on patrol around the Aberystwyth Castle grounds and saw a group of people hanging around. The officers said they could smell a strong scent of cannabis and when they opened up a rucksack, they discovered 13g of herbal cannabis. When the officers asked who it belonged to, Allen admitted that it was his. As a result, his phone was also ceased as they conducted a search.

Ms Morgan added that the herbal cannabis was sent for forensic investigation and officers discovered a further 9.91g in plastic wraps, which was later confirmed that the street value was approximately £91.90 for the for the smaller amount and £133.10 for the larger amount.

Allen’s text messages were also analysed and officers found 52 contacts on his phone, with written confirmation in the text messages that needed no explanation.

PC Rogers, one of the officers who regularly analyses text messages, stated that it the messages suggest that the defendant clearly had built up a trust with his contacts. The messages would involve a reply in the defendant saying if he had any drugs for sale, and that he takes pride in what he sells by charging £10 for 1g and £20 for 2g.

PC Roger’s also added that it is impossible to say how much money the defendant has made to date on the selling of drugs.

With regards to the threatening behaviour offence s on July 5, Allen got into an argument which was provoked by the complainant kicking Allen’s flat door.

She said that an officer and his wife were walking along the High Street in Borth at 1.15pm where they heard a male voice and a female screaming, which was getting louder, and called the police.

A vehicle pulled over on the kerb outside and the defendant was spotted appearing from his property three or four times wearing blue boxer shorts and getting agitated.

While the complainant was trying to calm the defendant down, the officer’s wife heard the female continue to scream at the defendant, saw the complainant try to enter the property with full force and saw the defendant come back out again from the property.

Ms Morgan added that in a statement, the complainant said that he had parked his car at Borth for about 20 minutes while he went to visit his mother when he heard the female scream. As he recognised the voice, he went to the property and the defendant shouted threats at him.

Concerned with the doors being locked, the complainant kicked the door twice and headed up two flights of stairs when he saw the female lying on the ground. The defendant made further threats towards the complainant when he thought it was wise to leave and proceeded to call the police from outside the building.

As he heard the complainant talking to the police on the phone, the defendant raced out of his property with an aerosol in his hand and the female saw him squirt at the complainant while he tried to calm him down. As a third party tried to calm them both down, the defendant sprayed the aerosol at the other person.

The complainant told the police that the defendant was trying to get him to fight and when he told them the defendant had a gun, the defendant dropped his shorts to prove he had no gun and the complainant made his disgust clear.

Ms Morgan added that the there was no physical confrontation, but that it was concerning for the complainant. The complainant only got involved as he thought the female was in danger and that the police found no gun, which the complainant believed to be true at the time.

Defending, Iestyn Davies told the court that the incident was something like a ‘schoolyard fight‘.

With regards to the drug offences, Mr Davies said that there is no way of telling that the 52 contacts are separate people as it is common for people to change their numbers or have two phones. The defendant has previously said that his current medication for his ADHD does not agree with him and that, due to his age, peer pressure and immaturity has played a part in selling drugs. He is also very sorry and upset to be attending court.

Mr Davies added that it is street dealing at the basic level, with Allen admitting that he does not remember what he said when he made the threats but did remember being in the flat. The police searched the property twice with dogs and found no gun or spray.

Probation Officer Julian Davies told the court as part of a character report that Allen was able to fund the cannabis by selling it to others and even though he knew it was illegal, he did not think he would get caught with a little amount.

Even though there was history with the complainant, he knew onlookers would see and feels ashamed of the incident.

Mr Davies added that Allen has eight convictions from nine previous offences, a referral order from 2013, a possession of cannabis offence from 2013 and 2014, and is considered to be a medium risk of harm. Even though he tends to smoke cannabis to help him sleep, Allen has accepted that he cannot use cannabis for this reason for the rest of his life.

Following recommendation, Magistrates imposed a 12 month community order on Allen, which include 24 rehabilitation activity days, 20 thinking skills sessions, and 120 hours of unpaid work.

Allen was also recommended to see his GP regarding better medication and was ordered to pay £205 in court costs.

Magistrates also issued an order for the destruction of the drugs.

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Aggressive man found naked and abusive

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A NAKED man who urinated in a police cell required six police officers deal with his arrest.

Brian Warren Kerley, 24, of Clos Yr Helyg in Crymych, attended Aberystwyth Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (Nov 15) to face four offences.

Kerley pleaded guilty to assaulting two constables in the execution of their duty, using threatening behaviour towards another with intent, and damaging police property by urinating in a cell and on its mattress.

Prosecutor Helen Tench said on October 31, police received a call regarding a disturbance in a public place in Cardigan. They arrived at the scene to find Kerley stripped of clothing and behaving in a threatening manner.

The defendant was escorted to the police vehicle, where he became increasingly aggressive towards a member of the public. He then wrapped his leg around one of the officers’ to trip him up. He spat on the other officer’s arm.

Ms Tench said the defendant continued spitting and became ‘extremely aggressive and violent’ when he banged his head inside the police vehicle.

A total of six police officers assisted with the arrest.

At custody, officers attempted to reason with Kerley whilst he continued his threatening behaviour, and was monitored in his cell every 30 minutes.

In the early hours of November 1, the defendant urinated in his cell three times. Two of these times, he urinated on the mattress.

In a statement, Kerley said he was sorry for committing the offences and did not remember the incident.

Defending, Katy Hanson said Kerley was filled with remorse and regret for his behaviour and accepted responsibility.

She added that it ‘clearly is not the way for someone to behave’ and the defendant ‘now realises the potential consequences of his actions’.

Ms Hanson concluded by saying Kerley admitted to having consumed three cans of lager on the night in question and has no recollection of the events.

Probation officer Julian Davies said the defendant was currently serving a 12-month community order imposed on September 20 for an offence of common assault.

For the offences, magistrates allowed the current community order to continue and added a six-week curfew.

Kerley was told to pay £50 compensation to both officers he assaulted, but no compensation for the offence of criminal damage.

He was also told to pay prosecution costs of £85 and a surcharge of £85.

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Scrutiny committee votes to close Bodlondeb

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AT A recorded vote this morning (Nov 20) Ceredigion’s Healthier Communities Scrutiny Committee voted to back the Cabinet’s decision to close Bodlondeb Residential Home by the end of March 2018.

In refusing to remit the decision to Full Council, the committee dashed the hopes of campaigners fighting to retain Bodlondeb until adequate replacement facilities are in place.

The vote was nine to seven with no abstentions.

There will be more on this breaking story later and in this week’s Ceredigion Herald.

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AM calls for further protection of wild animals after Lynx deaths

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MID AND WEST AM Simon Thomas has called for further protection from the Welsh Government following the death of two wild cats from a zoo in Borth, near Aberystwyth.

The AM quizzed the Cabinet Secretary for the Environment and Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths in a topical question in the Senedd.

Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Climate Change and Rural Affairs for Plaid Cymru Simon Thomas said: “The deaths of the two Lynx wild cats have created a great deal of concern to many people in the area and, more broadly, to people who care for animals and their welfare at zoos.

“I asked whether the Welsh Government approved of the steps taken by Ceredigion County Council in this case and more broadly with the position of the zoo. It’s clear that there’s something amiss when a wild animal can escape and another dies because of its handling. I requested we look at national regulations that govern organisations such as this to ensure that people who run zoos do have the appropriate skills, but also that the equipment is suitable for the animals kept there.

The Cabinet Secretary Lesley Griffiths replied: “Ceredigion County Council is investigating the escape of the lynx and the death of a second lynx linked to the zoo to establish whether there have been any breaches of the operating licence. While inquiries are ongoing it would be inappropriate for me to comment further on this matter.”

She added: “Officials have been in frequent contact with Ceredigion County Council. The decision to dispatch the animal was taken by the county council along with Dyfed-Powys Police, officials from Welsh Government and also the chief veterinary officer. There are several issues that I think need to be looked into very carefully around the licence.”

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