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Dealer caught on video in Warminster
1:00pm Thursday 20th December 2012 in Latest News
A drug dealer was filmed peddling cocaine by a town centre CCTV camera after a sharp-eyed camera operator spotted what was going on.
Paul Holton, of St George Close, Warminster, was arrested minutes after sealing the deal when police were told about the suspicious activity, and now he has been jailed for 29 months.
The 23-year-old met two men in Warminster town centre in the early hours of Sunday, May 27.
After chatting in a car park, they walked out into the road close to the Weymouth Arms and the deal took place.
Colin Meeke, prosecuting, showed footage of the deal during a hearing at Swindon crown court.
He said: “The matter arises because Warminster town centre operators became aware of the defendant’s activities in the early hours of the morning.
“Perhaps so people can be aware how good CCTV can be, the dealing is actually shown on video.”
Holton is seen taking cash from two men on a street corner and handing over a package before touching knuckles and walking off.
“The defendant then walks off down the street into the waiting arms of some constables,” said Mr Meeke.
They then searched him and found two snap seal bags containing cocaine with a purity of three per cent and £140 in cash. His home was also raided by police and in his bedroom officers found a further 27 wraps of cocaine weighing a total of 21.4 grams.
The court heard that the haul had a street value of up to £1,470 if it was sold as small street deals.
When Holton’s phone was analysed it was found he had been sending out text messages advertising his dealing. A couple of days earlier he had said: “I have got some cocaine in if you know anyone who wants any” while other texts talk about meeting him by the Weymouth Arms.
Holton pleaded guilty to supply of cocaine and possession with intent to supply.
Mark Ashley, defending, said that his client was caught when he was conducting his third transaction as a dealer.
He said his client had been to school and got qualifications, but suffered from frailties in his mental health.