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‘Very good family’ deeply upset at drug dealing son’s behaviour

AN ACCOUNTANCY student who dropped out of university after he began taking drugs has been jailed for 32 months for trafficking cocaine.

Ashfaq Yaqub, 23, threw away a promising future when he got in with the wrong crowd and began taking cannabis and dabbling with Class A drugs, Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday.

During the hearing, it emerged that Yaqub was from a “very good family” who had been “deeply upset and distressed” by his behaviour.

He was caught by the police with drugs, cash and dealer phones in a car parked in Great Horton Road, Bradford, at 1.15am on December 11 last year.

When police searched his home in Hampden Street, Little Horton, Bradford, they seized £6,000 in cash from his bedroom, prosecutor Alisha Kaye told the court.

Yaqub pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine with intent to supply and possession of cannabis.

Miss Kaye said that nine small bags of cocaine were found in the car, along with £295 in cash, cannabis and cannabis grinders.

Among the other items in the vehicle were two phones.

They contained text messages that implicated Yaqub in drug dealing, the court heard.

He had £80 on him when he was searched at the police station.

Yaqub denied the offences and made no comment to further police questions.

His barrister, Shufqat Khan, said Yaqub was a carer for his poorly mother who brought him up after his father died when he was ten.

He had done well at school and gained a place at university to study accountancy.

However, he dropped out of university in his second year after he began using cannabis and cocaine and “everything fell apart,” Mr Khan said.

Yaqub ran up a drug debt and damaged a car he had borrowed.

He was now free from drugs and was hoping to return to university in the future.

Yaqub, who had no previous convictions, felt a real sense of shame and disappointment, magnified by his mother’s condition, Mr Khan said.

Urging the Recorder of Bradford, Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC, to suspend the inevitable custodial sentence, Mr Khan said: “All he is asking for is one chance.”

Judge Durham Hall told Yaqub: “You are from a very good family and they are deeply upset and distressed by your behaviour.”

But Yaqub was preying on others with the sale of Class A drugs, the Recorder pointed out.

The hearing concluded with a warning to would-be offenders.

“The courts will continue, supported by the public, to send the clearest message out that this will not be tolerated,” the Recorder said.

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