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Drug use has "blighted" man's life for 35 years, court told
3:30pm Thursday 8th May 2014 in Local
A REDDITCH man whose adult life has been "blighted" by drug use has been given a suspended jail sentence.
Mark Riley, age 52, of Flanders Close, would find it hard to give up on his use of amphetamines after 35 years, Worcester Crown Court heard.
Riley pleaded guilty to possessing the class B drug with intent to supply after police raided his home in the afternoon on January 31 last year. Other people were there and he admitted he had some cannabis in his pocket. They found £610 worth of amphetamines in the kitchen as well as £330 in cash, Michael Conry prosecuting, told the court.
Mr Conry said Riley had made regular appearances in court since 1979 and had previous convictions for drug dealing and possession.
Richard Hull, defending, said Riley told police he was not "making a fortune" but would occasionally sell some drugs to friends to fund his own addiction.
"For a man of his age to confirm that for the last 35 years he has been taking a harmful substance is alarming," Mr Hull said. "He is remarkably honest and knows he would have real difficulty in stopping.The addiction has blighted most of his adult life."
He said Riley lived alone on disability benefits and his friends were mostly other users so he had little support for tackling his addiction.
Judge Toby Hooper, QC, said Riley had not been before the courts for three years and it appeared he did have the ability and the motivation to stay clear of drugs if he put his mind to it.
He gave Riley a 12 months jail sentence suspended for two years with 12 months supervision. He will also be on an electronically tagged curfew between 7pm and 7am for six months. He was given a concurrent one month sentence for admitting possession of a small amount of cannabis.