Cocaine dealer caught in Grantham given last chance by judge

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A man who admitted dealing in cocaine after he was the victim of a serious assault has been given a last chance to turn his life around by a judge.

Nathan Joseph, 21, was given a two-year suspended prison sentence after a judge heard he had now been provided with stable accommodation by the homeless charity Framework.

Judge Michael Heath had deferred sentence on Joseph for six months after being told he was previously a law abiding youngster with good prospects who had only turned to drugs after being subjected to a “vicious attack”.

The incident in which he was lured to a site where he was attacked with broken bottles left him fighting for his life. The court heard Joseph was arrested in August last year after fleeing from the scene when police attended an unconnected incident in College Street, Grantham.

Joseph attempted to cycle away but swerved and fell off his push bike. He was found to have a bag containing seven wraps of cocaine in his hand. During a search £30 worth of cannabis was also found on him.

Sunnil Khanna, mitigating, told the court Joseph’s life had become “chaotic” after Judge Heath agreed to defer sentence on him in May this year.

Mr Khanna said Joseph was asked to leave his aunty’s house in Grantham and became homeless after being forced to move to Lincoln to find accommodation.

“His situation made things difficult for him,” Mr Khanna added. “He was on the streets and homeless.”

The court heard while living rough Joseph was caught with a small amount of cannabis. But Mr Khanna told the court Joseph had now been offered support by the homeless charity Framework and was living at a settled address in Carholme Road, Lincoln.

Joseph, formerly of Medway Avenue, Grantham, admitted possession of cocaine with intent to supply and possession of cannabis on August 6, 2013.

He was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment suspended for two years and placed under the supervision of a probation officer for 12 months. He must also reside at the address in Carholme Road, Lincoln, for 12 months.

Passing sentence, Judge Heath told Joseph: “If you do breach this order you will not find me so merciful again.”