Drug dealer who was armed to ‘protect himself’ jailed for 35 months

Court news.
Court news.

A drug dealer who armed himself with weapons to protect himself was today (Friday) jailed at Lincoln Crown Court.

Matthew Ackroyd, described as a street dealer, was twice found with drugs on him after he was stopped by police in his home town of Boston.

Phil Howes, prosecuting, said that Ackroyd initially attracted suspicion after he was spotted by a CCTV operator who reported suspicious behaviour in Lawrence Lane, Boston.

The matter was passed on to police who followed Ackroyd to Church Close in the town.

The car Ackroyd was driving had no insurance or valid MoT certificate and a syringe was found on the passenger seat. More drugs were found in the car including loaded syringes and weapons including a pepper spray, a knife and a knuckleduster were recovered by officers.

Mr Howes said “Ackroyd was handcuffed because of his erratic behaviour. When a syringe was found under the driver’s seat he claimed he had been stitched up.”

Messages found on two mobile phones indicated that Ackroyd was involved in drug dealing.

Ackroyd was bailed following the incident on 22 October but three months later was arrested again in King Street, Boston, after his car was involved in a collision with another vehicle.

Quantities of amphetamine, M Cat and heroin were discovered in his car along with other weapons.

Then in June officers went to an address in Boston to arrest Ackroyd and found him in possession of an illegal stun baton.

Ackroyd, 36, of Church Close, Boston, admitted supplying mephedrone, two charges of possession of drugs with intent to supply and five charges of illegal possession of drugs.

He also admitted two charges of possessing an offensive weapon, two charges of possession of a bladed article in a public place and two charges of possession of a prohibited weapon. He also admitted breach of bail by failing to appear before the Crown Court on an earlier occasion.

He was jailed for a total of 35 months.

Andrew Vout, in mitigation, said that Ackroyd turned to drugs following the break down of a long-term relationship.

“He was thrown out of the family home, stayed with friends and started dabbling with drugs.

“He then lost his job. From dabbling with a bit of M Cat he was then on heroin which became an overwhelming problem to deal with.

“He quickly found he was significantly in debt to those he was buying drugs from and there was pressure to repay those debts.

“After his first arrest he received threats for not repaying his debts. He was constantly looking over his own shoulder. The threats are the explanation as to why he had the various weapons with him. He accepts he should have sought help from lawful sources but he thought he could handle the situation.

“He is sorry. He knows he has made a mess of things but he is not the sort of person who is habitually before these courts. He is keen to put all this behind him and get on with his life.”