An unemployed man caught dealing cannabis less than two weeks after he was given a court order for burglary has been jailed for four months.
Damien Jones, 27, admitted possession of cannabis with intent to supply at Preston Crown Court.
Francis McEntee, prosecuting, told the court that police raided Jones’ home in Mendip Road, Leyland, near Preston, on April 2 last year, when investigating a separate matter of handling stolen goods.
Officers found a small quantity of cannabis, electronic scales, ‘snap-seal’ bags and £30 in cash.
Mr McEntee said Jones had played a “significant role” in “street level dealing” since the end of March, after leaving his job as a painter and decorator and roofer.
Alexander Rostron, defending, said his client had worked hard all his adult life and was promoted to the position of an inspector due to his success.
But he said Jones didn’t like his new role, and when his request to return to his old position was turned down, decided to quit his job.
He said: “Shortly after he realised that to leave employment was a mistake as he was left without any real way to fend for himself.
“He became involved in criminal behaviour.
“Seeing it as a way of making easy money he started selling cannabis, a drug he had smoked in the past.
“He knew where to get it but wasn’t a user at the time.”
Jones had five previous court appearances for five offences, including theft from a dwelling and taking a vehicle without consent.
In March 2012 magistrates handed him a community order for burgling an unoccupied home.
He then committed an offence of battery in July last year and appeared in court for handling stolen goods last November.
Mr Rostron said his client had encountered financial and relationship problems due to quitting his job, which had led to the incident of battery, against his partner.
He said Jones only made around £40 in profit from selling cannabis and was remorseful for what he had done.
He added that Jones, wearing a black, padded jacket in court, had since been offered a full time job in Leyland.
Judge Stuart Baker said Jones’ motive in selling cannabis was clear and that he did not fall into the category of people selling drugs to fund their own habit.
He said: “This was wholly commercial in its nature.
“You don’t have the mitigating factor of being someone who was coping unsuccessfully with an addiction to a controlled drug you were in the habit of taking.
“You committed this offence really quite flagrantly in a short time after the magistrates placed you on a community order.
“That is in my view a significant aggravating factor of this case.”
The judge said he accepted that Jones’ remorse was genuine and that he had only sold a “relatively small amount” of the Class B drug,
But sentencing him to 120 days in prison, the judge said: “The time has come for you to learn that the commission of offences will lead to an unpleasant outcome.”
A member of Jones’ family cried in the public gallery as he was led from the dock.