An Aberdeen man caught shifting 200 packets of heroin worth almost £10,000 around the city had been “taken advantage of” and “exploited”, a court has been told.
John Ferrier was caught with £9,960 of the Class A drug hidden in a mailbag beneath his car seat as he was in the process of passing it between dealers on August 25 last year.
The 60-year-old’s Nissan Note was pulled over by police in Oldcroft Place where it was searched by officers and the huge haul of drugs was discovered.
Fiscal depute Brian Young told Aberdeen Sheriff Court how Ferrier was stopped at 11.20am and was accompanied by another man in the passenger seat.
“Officers found a mailbag containing brown powder under the driver’s seat,” the fiscal said. “It contained three knotted plastic packages which in turn contained further packages.
“There were 199 plastic packages of visually similar size and appearance and one torn package.”
Drugs worth almost £10k
The parcels were 200 deals of heroin set out in 0.5-gram deals and with a potential resale value of between £7,910 and £9,960.
Ferrier was arrested and told officers he had been instructed to collect the parcel from one man and deliver it to another woman.
He admitted being concerned in the supply of controlled drugs while acting along with another.
Defence agent David Sutherland said his client had been “scared” when the woman told him “here are the drugs” and he realised what the parcel contained.
“He then did as he was directed,” the solicitor said. “He confirmed to police he thought it was Class A drugs and that he didn’t know the extent of what was there.
“The report highlights the exploitative nature of his relationship with the other man and how vulnerable Mr Ferrier is.”
Someone else was ‘calling the shots’
Sheriff Andrew Miller heard how Ferrier had never been in prison before and has distanced himself from his former friend since the offence.
Sparing him a jail term, he told him: “The report forms the view that you wouldn’t have been here today nor involved in this very serious offence in any way were it not for the fact you were essentially exploited by and taken advantage of by someone who has effectively been calling the shots.
“He knew what was in the bag and was making all the arrangements as to what was to happen to the bag.
“You have found yourself in this one-way exploitative relationship with this person for a number of years and I sincerely hope that is behind you now.”
Ferrier, of Castlehill, Aberdeen, was handed a one-year supervision order and an 18-week curfew as an alternative to custody.
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