January 26 at 00:00
A deaf teenager charged with importing drugs told police he was “terrified” by what he had got himself into. Toby Fairall, 19, from Alderbury, admitted at Salisbury Crown Court to importing herbal cannabis with a street value of £5,000, possession with intent to supply, and being concerned with the supply of a class-B drug. Fairall had researched cannabis on “the dark web” – a part of the internet only accessible with special software, allowing users to remain anonymous and untraceable. Prosecuting, Simon Edwards told the court on January 20 that police has received intelligence that Fairall had been using a program called Amora – “the equivalent of Amazon”.
He had exchanged pounds into the online-only currency Bitcoin, before spending £14,750 on 26 transactions over five months. He received packages every three weeks. His final one was on January 30, 2016. The UK Border Force found one of the packages in December and Fairall’s house was searched. Officers found 500g of cannabis and £2,000 in cash. He admitted having supplied cannabis in the past but denied having made any profit. Defending, Guy Ladenburg said Fairall had turned his life around in the three months after his last shipment. “There was a naivety with how these offences took place, and at one time or another you would have known undesirable people to get the drugs. “But he was a very young man, and in his own interview he admitted he was terrified at what he had got into.” He was said to have been “withdrawn” in school as he was 80 per cent deaf in one ear and 20 per cent in the other. But he had been in stable employment, and had even taken voluntary drug tests at work.
Judge Susan Evans accepted that Fairall had made efforts to stop smoking cannabis, but said it was his instant admission of guilt which spared him from a more severe sentence. Fairall was jailed for 14 months suspended for 18 months. He was told to carry out 200 hours unpaid work and fined £750. The drugs and his mobile phone are to be destroyed.