An Aberdeen man caught with cannabis worth more than £320,000 has been jailed for five years.
The High Court in Glasgow heard fingerprints on a box containing almost £40,000 of drugs money linked 25-year-old Daniel Adams, from Aberdeen, to co-accused Ian Austin, 38, from Liverpool.
Adams was sentenced to 58 months in prison. Austin – who claimed the cash came from selling snakes – was jailed for 43 months.
Judge Lady Rae told the pair: “This is an evil trade that you are involved in. Lives are blighted by drugs.
“You both played an important role in this trade.
“What must your children think of you both? What sort of example are you giving to youngsters? I see the misery of drugs day in day out in this job and it is not a pleasant experience.”
Adams and Austin admitted being concerned in the supply of cannabis resin in September last year
The court heard after receiving information an organised crime gang was operating in the Aberdeen area and dealing in drugs, an undercover operation was set up which snared Adams and Austin.
Dad-of-two Adams was seen leaving a flat in Balgownie Court, Aberdeen, carrying a rucksack and giving it to Austin, who drove off.
Austin’s car was later stopped and searched, and £39,920 in cash was found in a shoebox inside the rucksack.
During a police interview Austin initially told police: “I breed Boa Python snakes and came from Liverpool to Aberdeen to supply a man with snakes.”
Adams was caught on the M74 near Bothwell, Lanarkshire. When the car in which he was a passenger was searched, a large quantity of cannabis resin was discovered.
Austin’s defence counsel Derick Nelson said that his client owed money to drug dealers.
Ronnie Renucci, defending Adams, said: “He accepts he had a choice and made the wrong choice. He recognises he has let himself down and let his family down.”
Detective Inspector Robin Sim, of the Organised Crime and Counter-Terrorism Unit in Aberdeen, said: “We had a lot of intelligence from people across Aberdeen about Adams, who turned out to be high up in the supply of controlled drugs across the city.”