Over seven years in prison for Sheffield drug dealer who continued to offend while on bail
A Sheffield man, who continued to persistently offend while on bail for dealing Class A drugs, has been put behind bars for over seven years.
During a hearing at Sheffield Crown Court on Wednesday, Judge Roger Thomas QC jailed Tarek Azimeh for a total of 92 months for a string of crimes including possession with intent to supply heroin, crack cocaine and cannabis, dangerous driving and drug driving.
The court heard how the 22-year-old's spate of offending began on October 5, 2016 when police officers stopped him as he was in a sat in the drivers' seat of a parked car with two passengers.
Prosecutor, Neil Coxon, said: "The two passengers made good their escape. The defendant was searched and they found him in possession of a small amount of cannabis and £800 in cash. The car was searched and they found 42 packages of crack cocaine weighing 3.34 grams, there were 14 packages of heroin weighing 1.3 grams and 28 packages of cannabis."
The drugs found in Azimeh's possession had an estimated street value of £840.
When interviewed by police, he told officers that he accepted that the cannabis was his but denied any knowledge of the Class A drugs, and continued say he had no involvement with dealing despite text messages found on his phone that suggested otherwise.
Azimeh, of Edward Street, Netherthorpe was released on police bail, and he was found dealing once more at around 2.40am on April 4, when officers found him in a silver Mini vehicle with a woman in her pyjamas who appeared to be buying drugs from him.
Officers searched the vehicle once again and found £115 in cash and under the drivers' seat they found nine packages of crack cocaine with an estimated value of £90; they found 10 packages of heroin worth £100.
When interviewed about this incident, Azimeh told police the car belonged to a friend and said the cannabis was his but once again denied any involvement with dealing Class A drugs. He was released on bail once again.
Azimeh committed his dangerous driving charge on April 19 last year, when he drove a Mitisbushi 4X4 hire car at a female pedestrian positioned close to a man he was arguing with. The pedestrian was left with minor injuries, the court heard.
He was then found to have driven with excess cannabis in his system on two occasions in November last year and January this year.
Azimeh admitted to the string of offences, which also included the summary offences of driving without a license and driving without insurance, during earlier hearings at Sheffield Magistrates' Court and Sheffield Crown Court.
Defending, Richard Holland, told the court that Azimeh was a Syrian refugee who arrived in the UK in 1999, after his family fled the country from 'political persecution'.
He said: "As a youth he was bullied for his stutter. He ran away from home as a teenager, and at 16 he was put into care and fell into the wrong crowd and has previously been shot and stabbed as a 16-year-old and as a 20-year-old."
Mr Holland continued by saying Azimeh had an addiction to cannabis, and began dealing drugs in order to be able to afford Class B drug and to 'fund a lifestyle he couldn't otherwise afford'.
Judge Thomas also banned Azimeh from driving for a period of six-and-a-half years.