South Yorkshire drug dealer jailed

Paul Sherrington, of Howell Gardens, Thurnscoe - convicted after police seized drugs worth over �1 million.
Paul Sherrington, of Howell Gardens, Thurnscoe - convicted after police seized drugs worth over �1 million.
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A South Yorkshire builder who turned his house into a drugs factory after his business collapsed has been jailed for 15 years.

Paul Sherrington, aged 50, was described as ‘not Mr Big but somewhere down the chain’ at Sheffield Crown Court.

He was found in possession of 1.98 kilogrammes of heroin, 1.14 kilogrammes of cocaine and 45.48 kilogrammes of amphetamines.

The drugs would have been worth £1.43 million on the streets, said prosecutor Brian Outhwaite.

The court heard Sherrington was cutting substances at home and preparing them for transfer by packaging them before they were sold on.

Family man Sherrington, of Howell Gardens, Thurnscoe, near Barnsley, was spotted by police in his VW Golf while travelling to Blyth in Nottinghamshire.

Officers saw him swap a box with a man called Craig Richardson at a supermarket and it was later found to contain £15,750 worth of amphetamines.

Sherrington was kept under observation and in March 2013 was pulled over by police in Nottingham.

Under the driver’s seat police found two plastic bags containing just under one kilogramme of heroin of 57 per cent and 49 per cent purity.

At his home, mixing agents for heroin and cocaine were found in a bedroom with a dealing list.

Scales with traces of cocaine were found in his garage along with more cutting agents and a vacuum plastic bag sealing kit.

Officers also discovered a metal plate in his rucksack which was for a hydraulic press used to press drugs when mixed with agents.

A house owned by his wife Julie at Kingsway, Thurnscoe, was searched and cocaine, heroin and amphetamines were found.

Sherrington was arrested but refused to answer any questions.

He admitted five offences of possessing heroin, cocaine and amphetamines with intent to supply.

Robert Smith, defending, said he was a family man and of previous good character having worked as a roadman for the local council.

He went into business as a builder but ‘chose the wrong time’ during the recession and the business crashed leaving him in a serious financial mess.

“His contacts persuaded him against his better judgement to become involved in drug dealing,” said Mr Smith.

Judge Robert Moore said: “For reasons purely of temptation and debt you got yourself into a trusted senior position in a drug supply and preparation chain.

“You were materially involved with cutting, preparing and selling cocaine, heroin and amphetamines.”