Jun 22 2012 by Stephen Robertson, Stirling Observer Friday
A STIRLING drug dealer caught red-handed selling heroin has been jailed for seven months.
Charles Bartle (53) was first stopped and spoken to by police in Stirling at around 10.25am on November 22 last year as they suspected that he was dealing.
Stirling Sheriff Court heard on Wednesday that a search at that stage found no illegal substances, only £30 in cash.
Just over half-an-hour later, however, police swooped after seeing Bartle carrying out an apparent drug deal on Stirling’s Drip Road.
Fiscal depute Catriona Steele said: “They saw the accused and the other male exchange money and another item simultaneously and they both walked off along Drip Road.”
While no drugs were found on Bartle he was said to have had £40 in cash on him.
Ms Steele added: “The accused was interviewed and he admitted selling [the other man] a £10 bag of heroin.”
Bartle then told police “I put my hands up. I’m caught fair and square”.
Bartle, of Keir Avenue, Stirling, pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of heroin, a class A drug.
His solicitor Frazer McCready said that the matter before the court related to one incident of dealing in heroin.
Mr McCready added: “He had previously had difficulties with heroin but he had engaged with various organisations. It would appear that he relapsed.
“He’s a man in his 50s that should know better than getting involved in something as foolish as this.”
After considering sentence, Sheriff Wyllie Robertson told Bartle: “You have a bad record that shows a number of convictions, albeit some years ago.
“In 1999 you were sentenced for drug dealing and you should have known what you were exposing yourself to by continuing to engage in this behaviour. This was an offence where there was a commercial element to fund your own habit.”
The sheriff then jailed Bartle for seven months, this being reduced from eight months due to his guilty plea.