A DRUG dealer who tried to escape from the police by driving at 85mph through a residential area during a dramatic car chase is behind bars.

Ross Appleby, 22, was caught by officers as he was trafficking a cargo of cannabis in Newport, prosecutor Jenny Yeo said.

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She told how detectives also found “text bombs” on the defendant’s iPhone advertising crack cocaine for sale.

Cardiff Crown Court heard that Appleby was offering “Pure rocks, 2 for 50” with the ad being sent out to 118 potential customers.


He also asked 106 contacts on his phone if they wanted cannabis which was the “best bud around”.

Mrs Yeo said Appleby was jailed for 14 months last September for dangerous driving following the high-speed pursuit.

The court heard how the defendant had driven on the wrong side of the road and ran red lights before crashing into a building.

When he was arrested, he was found with 22 cannabis street deals worth £300 which he was storing in an Ovaltine jar.

Appleby appeared before Cardiff Crown Court to face charges of offering to supply crack cocaine and cannabis and possession of cannabis with intent to supply.

The defendant, of Power Street, Newport, pleaded guilty to the three offences which he committed on March 6, 2020.

The court heard he was released from prison for the dangerous driving matter in January.

Mrs Yeo told the judge, Recorder IWL Jones, how Appleby was locked up for dangerous driving in 2017.

She added that he had further previous convictions for affray, possession of an offensive weapon, public disorder and battery.

The defendant’s barrister, Christopher Evans, asked for his client’s guilty pleas and the delay in the case coming to court to be taken into account.

Recorder Jones told Appleby: “You have a long record for someone so young.”

He jailed the defendant for 28 months.