A heroin dealer who exchanged texts with criminal associates claiming they were “feeding the hungry” by supplying them with class A drugs was yesterday jailed for more than three years.
Charlie Anderson’s high-value heroin business was busted when police found him in his car at the side of the A92 in Angus after it had run out of petrol.
Suspicions were raised when he told officers there was a bundle of cash under the driver’s seat.
Police then found a stash of heroin in the car, as well as some of the proceeds of his drug dealing.
Anderson’s mobile phone was then examined by officers – uncovering encrypted messages sent through WhatsApp to his supplier, as well as lower-level street dealers he was working with.
A sheriff told Anderson that the messages indicated that “dealing heroin was his occupation”.
Depute fiscal Eilidh Robertson told Dundee Sheriff Court that the defendant was found at 1.10am on December 15 last year at the side of the A92 Arbroath to Dundee road.
She said: “Reports were received of a vehicle at the side of the road having apparently broken down.
“Police attended and he said he had run out of fuel. Following checks he was arrested for another matter and when he was searched they found a SIM card in his mouth.
“He said there was cash under the front driver’s seat and when they opened the drawer under the seat they found two packages of brown powder, later identified as heroin with a maximum street value of £2,800.”
Anderson’s mobile phones were checked and screeds of WhatsApp messages were found implicating him in a scheme to buy heroin from high- level dealers and sell it on to street dealers.
Some referred to him buying kilo deals of heroin for up to £21,000 a time, with a plan to dilute the quality of the drug and sell it on for £30,000.
One message he received from a street dealer read: “As long as you get the food I’ve got the hungry.”
Anderson, 27, a prisoner at HMP Perth, pleaded guilty on indictment to being concerned in the supply of heroin between November 30 and December 15 last year.
Sheriff Alastair Carmichael jailed him for three years and two months, reduced from four-and-a-half years for his early guilty plea.
He said: “The texts recovered by police showed you played a significant role in the chain of supply of heroin to the extent that one reading could be that drug dealing was your occupation.
“Dundee currently has the unenviable position of having above the UK average numbers of drug deaths, the majority for heroin. That’s something I have to take into account.”