A MAN caught with enough heroin to make around 60 “tenner” bags told a court yesterday he bought in bulk because he was fed up paying over the odds at Oban.
Colin Cornelius, 34, is on trial before a sheriff and jury at Oban Sheriff Court accused of being concerned in the supply of heroin at 13 Polvinister Gardens, Oban, on September 17, 2008.
He denies the charge claiming the three bags – one with 0.074oz and two containing 0.11oz of heroin – found by police at his ex-partner’s home were for his own use.
Cornelius, of 7C Ellinger Court, Dalmuir, did not live at the Oban address at the time but had access to it. He said he had been addicted to heroin on and off for 10 or 11 years. At the time of the raid he could take between three and five bags a day. He said “tenner bags” usually at around 0.005oz, were not available at Oban, only “score” bags, priced at £20 and weighing about 0.007oz. He said he bought the three bags which he believed to weigh around 0.10oz for £100 each.
“It was for myself to do me for a couple of weeks because I came into some money that week and I was sick of paying £20 up in Oban all the time for next to nothing. I won £258 in the bookies on the football and picked up my giro for £204. I bought a couple of bags in Oban for £40 and it was rubbish so I dec-ided to go to Glasgow the next day. Sometimes you could pay £25 for a bag in Oban.”
He said he went to a Glasgow pub and bought the drugs from an associate he only knew as “Smithy”.
Detective Constable Michael Miller, from a specialist drug squad in Glasgow, said the amount found at Polvinister Gardens was enough to make around 60 bags costing £10 each.
He said: “£25 a bag is wrong. That suggests Oban has a different drug culture from the rest of Scotland. Heroin is freely available in Oban. If there was a shortage things might change.
“Tenner bags always cost a tenner, they wouldn’t go up in price, the size or the quality would go down. If you could make double the profit in Oban, the town would be absolutely awash with organised criminal gangs. It is not.”
He said the three bags at Polvinister Gardens were from eighth of an ounce deals.
“Users don’t buy an eighth, user dealers do.”
The trial continues today.