POLICE found 1kg of cannabis and £4,000 cash at a drug dealer’s home after they acted on a tip-off.

Officers raided Alan Hickling’s address in Markham, near Blackwood back in September 2021, Newport Crown Court was told.

Byron Broadstock, prosecuting, said they seized just over a kilo of the class B drug which was worth at least £7,150.

They also found £480 of cocaine and a mobile phone which had “numerous” drug-related messages on it.

Hickling, 34, of James Street, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply cannabis and possession of cocaine.

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The defendant had one previous conviction for a driving offence.

The court was told he had started dealing to fund his own drug use.

Owen Williams representing him said: “The case dates back to 2021 and since the commission of these offences, there has been no repetition of such offending or in fact any offending at all.

“Furthermore, this is a man who pleaded guilty to the lead offence in the magistrates’ court and so he's entitled, in my respectful submission, to maximum credit.

“Given what is said in the pre-sentence report, my invitation to the court is to draw back from imposing an immediate custodial sentence and impose a sentence that would address the defendant’s needs and the factors that underlie this offending.”

Judge Matthew Porter-Bryant told Hickling: “The pre-sentence report prepared tells me that you are remorseful and that your lifestyle at the time of your offending was centred around drug abuse and you say that you supplied cannabis to fund your own habit.

“The report also tells me that there is no established pattern of offending and that you present a low risk of re-conviction.”

The defendant was jailed for eight months but the sentence was suspended for 18 months.

He must carry out 100 hours of unpaid work, complete a 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement and pay a £187 victim surcharge.