Drugs dealer caught out by text messages

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Incriminating text messages led a St Helens man caught cultivating up to £1,000 worth of cannabis to admit he also supplied friends and family.

Graham Gray pleaded guilty to both the production of cannabis and possession of cannabis with intent to supply before St Helens Magistrates’ Court last week.

But, until police found incriminating text messages on his mobile phone, he insisted that the stash of the class B drug had all been for his own use.

Angela Blackmore, prosecuting, told how police raided the 50-year-old’s three-bedroom home on Furness Avenue, Windlehurst, on September 27 last year after securing a search warrant.

Gray was in the middle of rolling a joint when police struck.

Once inside the property, officers found that two of the rooms were being used to cultivate cannabis and another was being used as a drying room.

A number of “deal bags” containing cannabis were also discovered.

A large black tent and lighting equipment was found in one of the bedrooms and a child’s bedroom was being used as a drying room.

The loft was also being used as a growing room and the 60 grammes of plants seized were subsequently confirmed as cannabis by a forensic scientist.

Ms Blackmore told how the text messages discovered on Gray’s phone “clearly related to the supply of cannabis”.

Magistrates adjourned the case until June 26 for reports but warned they were “keeping all options open”.

Gray was released on unconditional bail.