Man on seventh drug offence

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A Banbridge man convicted of his seventh drugs offence will be sentenced next month after a court ordered a pre-sentence report.

Samuel George Thompson (29), Railway Street, Banbridge, appeared last Thursday at the local magistrates’ court.

He admitted one charge of unlawfully possessing a class B drug, cannabis resin, on September 16 last year.

The court heard he was in breach of a conditional discharge and a suspended sentence.

A public prosecutor said that during a search of premises in Banbridge police found two grams of cannabis which Thompson admitted belonged to him.

A solicitor representing the defendant said that a pre-sentence report may be appropriate.

He added that Thompson had not been taking drugs since this incident and had been attending addiction courses.

District Judge, Mr Paul Copeland, said this was on the custody threshold because of the suspended sentence and a pre-sentence report could be required.

He pointed out that this was Thompson’s seventh conviction in relation to drugs and in total his record contained 64 previous convictions for different offences.

Judge Copeland described Thompson as ‘one of the most prolific offenders from Banbridge’.

However he was encouraged that the defendant was participating in a rehabilitation programme and wanted to see what progress had been made and how genuine it was. He adjourned sentencing until July 23 so that a pre-sentence report could be obtained.