Whitehaven Army veteran jailed for drugs trafficking trip

John Patrick
John Patrick was caught with cocaine near Keswick

An Army veteran and father-of three has been jailed for three years after high-purity cocaine was found in his car.

John Patrick, 40, was caught on the A66 near Keswick while on a trafficking trip from Leeds to Cumbria in 2021 with drugs with a street value of £24,500.

Carlisle Crown Court heard he kicked and hit out at one police officer as they tried to search his car.

Recorder Tony Hawks said it was "very sad" Patrick, from Moor Row, near Whitehaven, had fallen "so low".

The court heard the defendant, of Clarack Drive, was initially co-operative when stopped but appeared nervous and gave conflicting details about his journey.

When told his vehicle would be searched, he became obstructive and attempted to escape by pushing officers.

As he was being restrained, a package containing 245g (9oz) of 76% purity cocaine fell to the ground, the court heard.

'Downward turn'

A search of Patrick's home found five wraps of cocaine, scales with white powder on them, four envelopes with names and amounts, and £120 in cash.

The drugs were to be sold among a small number of friends, the court was told.

Patrick admitted two counts of possessing cocaine with intent to supply, saying he had made only one journey as a courier while under pressure from a man who had called in a favour over an earlier loan.

He also admitted assaulting an emergency worker.

The court heard there had been a "downward turn" in Patrick's life following an exemplary discharge from Army service.

Recorder Hawks said: "It is very sad that somebody in your position who has so much to offer has fallen so low.

"But it seems to me I have got no option but to send you directly to prison today."

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