Drug dealer wins bid to have prison term cut

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A DRUG dealer who sold heroin while his children waited for him in the family car has had his prison sentence cut on appeal - so he can look after his sick wife.

Eric Curtis, aged 37, from Buckenham Street, Burngreave, Sheffield, was jailed for eight years in April after admitting two counts of supplying Class A drugs.

He was caught during an operation mounted by South Yorkshire Police to crack down on drug dealers in Doncaster.

Undercover police officers contacted Curtis in April last year and arranged to meet him in a car park, where he sold them nearly 30g of heroin with an estimated street value of more than £1,000.

Police then arranged a second, even larger, deal - and watched gobsmacked as Curtis pulled up with two of his children in his car before handing over around £6,000 worth of heroin while the youngsters waited for him.

But two senior judges, sitting at London’s Appeal Court, have now reduced his prison sentence to seven years after hearing Curtis has an ill wife and four children to look after.

Lawyers said he had fallen in with a bad crowd - and was ‘terrified’ after shots were fired at his house on the eve of his planned trial.

Ruling the eight-year term ‘manifestly excessive’, Mrs Justice Sharp said: “These were undoubtedly serious offences involving commercial dealing of a large amount of drugs.

“Nevertheless we take the view that, on the facts, this sentence was somewhat too long.”

Curtis will be eligible for automatic release after serving three-and-a-half years behind bars.