Four years in jail for Shetland drug dealer who operated from home

A heroin dealer who was discovered with £10,000-worth of the class A drug at his home was jailed for four years when he appeared at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Wednesday.

Stuart Bowie, 39, a prisoner in Aberdeen, was found with 86.9 grammes of the drug following a police search in Kveldsro Gardens, Lerwick, between November and January.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said police also found £850 in cash, electric scales and various other items associated with drug dealing such as mobile phones and squares of foil.

Following his arrest Bowie was taken to the police cells where he made a full and detailed admission and also alerted the police to money that they had not found during their search.

Mr MacKenzie said 79.75 grammes of the drug had been found in three condoms in Bowie’s living room, while the remainder was found in two Kinder eggs elsewhere in the house.

Defence agent Tommy Allen said Bowie was, by his own admission, a heroin addict and had been for 15 years, during which time the addiction had “ruled his life”.

Mr Allen said Bowie had become involved in supply after being threatened by drug dealers during a trip down south.

Bowie, he said, suffered from agoraphobia and depression, although neither condition is as problematic for him as his heroin addiction.

“His involvement in this was that he was asked to take some money to some people down south. He understood he would be paid in money for that and that money would be used to support his own addiction,” said Mr Allan.

“When he got there, there wasn’t enough money. A knife was put to his throat and he was given the option of the knife being used or him becoming concerned in the supply of the drug.

“It was intimated he was being held responsible for the shortfall of money which was £3,000, and he became involved in heroin supply because of that.”

He added Bowie hoped to become clear of the debt, and his intention was to leave Shetland and travel abroad where he hoped to cut himself off from heroin for good.

Sheriff Graeme Napier said Bowie had been involved in a “substantial” amount of dealing. He warned him he had been considering referring the matter to the High Court.

He gave credit to Bowie for taking steps to come off heroin while he was in custody, and reduced his sentence from a seven years starting off point to four years, back-dated to 22nd January when Bowie first appeared in private.


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