South Yorkshire drug dealers who suffered personal traumas avoid custody

Two teenage drug dealers who have both suffered personal traumas have been spared from custody despite being caught with heroin and crack cocaine.

By Jon Cooper
Wednesday, 19th January 2022, 4:09 pm

Danny Naughton, of Hawthorne Crescent, Mexborough, and Brandon Mills, of Lime Tree Avenue, Doncaster, both aged 18, were caught by police with hundreds of pounds worth of class A drugs at a flats complex near Simpson Place, Mexborough, according to a Sheffield Crown Court hearing.

But the court also heard during the hearing on January 18 that both defendants have since struggled after Naughton had been present during the fatal shooting of a friend and Mills was the victim of a violent robbery last year.

Timothy Jacobs, prosecuting, said: “These two defendants are of the same age living close by to each other and are clearly friends and acted in concert in the street dealing of class A drugs – mainly heroin and cocaine.”

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Sheffield Crown Court, pictured, has heard how two teenage drug-dealers have been spared from custody after they have both suffered personal traumas.

Mr Jacobs added a police officer found Mills with cash and five wraps of heroin, two mobile phones, and a bag with some cannabis and another officer found Naughton with 30 wraps of crack cocaine, two bags with packages of crack cocaine and another bag with 27 packages of full-wraps of heroin.

Police also recovered about 50 packages of cocaine and 30 packages of heroin from Naughton’s left pocket, according to Mr Jacobs, and cash was also found with an iphone.

Naughton and Mills, who are both of previous good character, both pleaded guilty to possessing cocaine with intent to supply and to possessing heroin with intent to supply after they were arrested on December 30, 2020. Mills also pleaded guilty to simply possessing class B drug cannabis.

Cheryl Dudley, defending, said Naughton has taken on board what he had involved himself in and understands the consequences and he has made changes with his life with the support of his family.

Defence barrister Emma Downing said Mills had been struggling after his grandmother was diagnosed with untreatable cancer and he started using cannabis and he is genuinely ashamed of his offending. Both defence counsel pointed out the defendants were only aged 17 at the time of the offending.

Judge Michael Slater told the defendants: “You were caught dealing class A drugs red-handed in the Mexborough area and from the amounts involved and the amounts of money recovered it’s clear while you were runners for a larger operation you were quite significantly involved.”

However, Judge Slater acknowledged both defendants have since made progress with their lives and have suffered trauma after Naughton was close-by when a friend was shot and killed and in a separate incident Mills had a bottle broken over his head and was stabbed in the leg during a robbery.

Judge Slater sentenced both defendants to 14 months of custody in a Young Offender Institution suspended for two years with a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement.

But he warned Naughton and Mills that if they breach the terms of their suspended sentences or commit any further offences they will face custody.

Judge Slater also made confiscation orders for £500 in cash from Naughton and for £378.60 in cash from Mills.

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