20th November 2018
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Four and a half years for heroin dealer

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A man who has been heavily involved in drug dealing in Shetland has been sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison.

Appearing from remand at Grampian Prison, Ebrahim Hassan, 52, admitted dealing heroin between 2nd April and 16th May this year following two other court hearings on the same indictment.

Several appeals for bail at the High Court in Edinburgh were turned down.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie told Lerwick Sheriff Court that it was clear from the scale of Hassan’s previous convictions that he was “part of Shetland’s drugs scene and someone who is engrained in the supply of controlled drugs.”

Hassan had been stopped by police in Lerwick on 2nd April with 19 wraps of heroin worth £380.

He had then been seen on the point of a drug deal by two plain clothes officers on 16th May at Norstane and he threw two wraps into a garden when they approached him.

Police searched his home and another property and turned up heroin worth £60 and £415 in cash.

Hassan had told police that he was selling drugs in order to get heroin for himself, but refused to say who his supplier was.

Tommy Allan, defending, said that Hassan was a street level dealer who had struggled with his own addiction but his spell in remand now meant he was clean of the drug.

He had been convicted of selling amphetamines in 2011 and had faced charges of supplying heroin before, but this was his first heroin conviction.

Hassan had slid back into heroin use and had been “exposed to violence”. Looking at his record, said Mr Allan, it was clear Hassan was “no stranger” to violence, but threats had been made not just to himself but his wife. “It’s not an easy thing to get out of,” he added.

Mr Allan said that Hassan had been in custody since 18th May during a time of difficult family circumstances when he was not there to support his sister and mother and he wanted to be in a position to “provide support as quickly as possible.”

Sheriff Philip Mann said that he had plenty of dealings with Hassan and was quite aware of his record.

The sheriff took a very strong line on the supply of drugs even for a first offender, and in respect of a repeat offender, it had to be severe. This was the second time that Hassan had been convicted on a supply of drugs indictment

He sentenced Hassan to 54 months in prison for the two charges, backdated to 18th May when he was taken into custody.