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Drug-dealer scared straight by prison time
A drug-dealer and former addict wrote to a judge detailing the deterrent prison had been.
Nikola Koncar, who was sentenced at Kingston Crown Court yesterday for having heroin and crack cocaine and intending to supply it to others, told Judge Georgina Kent he never wanted to go back behind bars.
Defending, Dominic Benthall told the court: “He found it extremely sobering, in the literal sense.
“His eyes are open to the realities of being in prison.
“That fear is very, very deeply ingrained in him now. He has strong reasons for staying out.”
Mr Benthall said Koncar’s letter detailed the ups and downs of two weeks of prison life, but that it contained “mostly downs”.
Koncar, 24, who has a young daughter and works part time at a Tesco store in Richmond, has kicked his drug habit, and has a stable family address, the court heard.
Mr Benthall added: “Tesco are aware of his convictions and have remained supportive of him throughout this time.
“It is a job that, combined with benefits, pays him about £100 per week.”
Koncar, who arrived in Britain from Belgrade, Serbia, in 1999, was spotted acting suspiciously by police in Surbiton in February of this year.
A search revealed he was carrying 45 wraps of heroin, worth £660, and 32 wraps of crack cocaine worth £320.
The heroin was between 60-80 per cent pure, the court heard. The crack cocaine was only 15-35 per cent pure.
Koncar was also carrying a small amount of cannabis and £150.
Messages on his mobile phone indicated he was involved in dealing drugs, the court heard.
Judge Kent questioned whether he had actually kicked the drugs, and said: “The fact that you were then prepared to handle while on bail does not bode well for the future.
“You have a very poor record for someone who is still only 24.
“I have seen what you have to say in your letter. It would be encouraging if you had managed to give up your drug addiction.”
The court also heard Koncar had breached bail by handling a stolen iPod in May, since recovered and returned to its owner – an offence for which he was also sentenced today.
He has eight previous convictions for 14 offences.
Koncar was handed a total of two years in prison, suspended for 18 months, and told to complete 150 hours of unpaid work within 12 months under supervision.
He was also docked £80 of the £150 he was found with, and ordered to pay a £100 victim surcharge.
The £70 left over will be handed back to his sister.
Koncar thanked Judge Kent as he left the court.
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