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Drug dealing dad escapes jail

PUBLISHED: 14:44 18 August 2001 | UPDATED: 10:26 03 March 2010

A MAN who sold drugs to provide for his unborn child has been handed a suspended jail sentence by magistrates in Ipswich.

Mark Cossins, of Merlin Road, Ipswich, admitted dealing and cultivating cannabis.

A MAN who sold drugs to provide for his unborn child has been handed a suspended jail sentence by magistrates in Ipswich.

Mark Cossins, of Merlin Road, Ipswich, admitted dealing and cultivating cannabis. He also pleaded guilty to possession of ecstasy and cocaine.

Magistrates heard how the 22-year-old turned to drugs to deal with the pressure of becoming a father for the first time. He also sold cannabis to raise funds for the imminent arrival of the baby.

The court heard that just ten days before Cossins appeared in court for sentencing his partner gave birth to a boy.

At the hearing at magistrates court in Ipswich, Cossins was sentenced to a total of 16 weeks in prison, suspended for two years.

Ian Pells, prosecuting, told the court that police executed a search warrant at the defendants previous address in Rosebery Road on April 12.

They found four lines of cocaine on a mirror, 15 cannabis plants, 218 microgrammes of cannabis resin and an unspecified quantity of ecstasy. They also found other "drug related paraphernalia."

Mr Pells said: "He was arrested and interviewed. During the course of the interview he admitted items of cannabis and cocaine were his for his own personal use."

Unemployed Cossins also said he had been selling cannabis to friends over a period of two to three weeks to raise extra funds. He said he gained about £150 from the deals.

Mark Holt, in mitigation, said that Cossins was a regular user of cannabis but that he used the other drugs on an infrequent recreational basis. He added that the quantities of cocaine and ecstasy were small.

He said: "The cannabis plants were planted from seed by himself. He encouraged them to grow as a normal house plant."

He continued: "There is no suggestion that lights or artificial fans were used to make them grow faster."

He added that he was growing the plants for his own use and that at the time of his arrest were in an "immature" state.

Referring to selling cannabis Mr Holt said: "He took it upon himself to raise more money for the imminent birth of the child.

"He wanted to give something towards the unborn child and he sold cannabis in small quantities over two to three weeks.

"He took it upon himself to sell drugs which he now realises was a totally inappropriate thing to do."

In sentencing Anne Parry, chairman of the bench, said: "For possession of Class A drugs, for possession and cultivation of Class B drugs and for supply, we considered that only a custodial sentence is appropriate."

He was sentenced to 12 weeks in prison for selling cannabis and four weeks custody for the cultivation of cannabis, to run consecutively.

For possession of cannabis he was given two weeks in prison to run concurrently and a further two weeks for the possession of class A drugs, also to run concurrently.

The sentences were all suspended for two years. Cossins was also fined £150 and ordered to pay £55 towards prosecution costs. Magistrates also ordered the forfeiture and destruction of the drugs and related items.

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