An Elgin drug dealer has been jailed after his illegal enterprises were brought down by the Royal Mail.
Gary Ross had cannabis he intended to sell-on to others posted to his home, only for his package to split during transit.
That alerted staff at the 30-year-old’s local delivery centre and they swiftly alerted the authorities who were soon knocking on his door.
Ross was already on bail for drug dealing, having been caught selling ecstasy tablets in the shape of cartoon character Spongebob Squarepants.
The town’s sheriff court heard a parcel addressed to Ross’ Pinegrove home came under the spotlight in the post office delivery centre on May 4 this year.
It had broken open during transportation and an employee spotted cannabis in the packet on its arrival.
They contacted the police and the court was told officers had seized the package three days later.
They subsequently raided Ross’ home, discovering 36.3 grammes of cannabis resin, but returned with a second warrant on May 25 after receiving information that he had yet more of the class B drug in his property.
On this occasion, they found 12 grammes of cannabis worth about £135, together with £325 in cash, scales, a tick list and other drug paraphernalia.
Depute Fiscal Alex Swain told Elgin Sheriff Court that Ross was already on bail for intent to supply ecstasy, a class A drug.
She said: “Police had attended the accused’s property on October 2 after a tip-off and recovered 20 yellow tablets marked with the cartoon character Spongebob Squarepants.
“In addition, they found four bags containing cannabis, plus scales, a tick list and 40 small plastic bags.
“The yellow tablets were positive for MDMA.
“When his phone was examined, officers found messages about selling and supplying drugs, including ones that said ‘got more green if you need it and more spongebobs as well’.'”
The ecstasy and cannabis was said to have been worth about £240.
Defence solicitor Robert Cruickshank acknowledged that his client had fallen on hard times having broken-up with his long-term partner.
He said: “Up until autumn of 2017, my client was working regularly, but when his long-term relationship fell apart, the temptation got the better of him.
“He is a young man who was no stranger to the court as a teenager but who had stopped offending following the birth of his daughter.
“If granted his liberty today, he would have sole custody of his 11-year-old daughter.
“He has shown a great deal of remorse throughout proceedings.”
Sheriff Chris Dickson considered Mr Cruickshank’s plea mitigation but decided that the only possible sentence was one of prison, due to Ross’s repeated offending while on bail.
He told Ross: “While the ten days you have spent on remand has been a wake-up call to you, you were still caught dealing drugs despite being on bail and then to continued to do that.
“The seriousness of the offence means that a custodial sentence is the only option.”
Ross pled guilty dealing cannabis, cannabis resin and ecstasy and was sentenced to 140 days behind bars.