A DRUG supplier who was caught dealing heroin in Ross-on-Wye has avoided an immediate prison sentence.

David Moore, 41, of River View in Ross was caught in possession of 30.741g of heroin with a value of just under £3,000.

Just before his trial was due to start in January he pleaded guilty to possession of heroin with the intent to supply and of supplying heroin.

At Hereford Crown Court yesterday he was sentenced to 23 months in prison, suspended for two years.

Charles Hamer, prosecuting, said on January 11, 2017 police officers went to Moore's home address at the time which was in Morley Square in Ross.

As they approached his home they stopped a man who had thrown a package on the ground nearby. The police seized the package which contained heroin.

The officers were then alerted to the defendant who was at the window of his home. They walked up to the window and saw Moore removing items from a bedside table.

An officer entered the home and arrested Moore. They found two large packets of heroin and smaller packets of the drug, which amounted to 30.741g.

The package which was found outside had the same level of purity and the same composition as the heroin found in Moore's home.

The court heard Moore had 29 convictions and 110 prior offences and from 2012 to 2014 had been in prison for a dwelling burglary.

Robert Morgan-Jones, in mitigation, said he accepted that these were serious matters with a starting point of four and a half years in prison.

He said at the time of the conviction Moore was "a man in the throes of a continuing drug addiction."

Mr Morgan-Jones said since the offences took place his brother, who was also a drug user and who relied on Moore, had died.

He said Moore has been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder following his last prison sentence and since January last year he has adhered to a qualifying curfew, which equates to a 13.7 month custodial term.

As of eight weeks ago he is the father of a child born prematurely.

Mr Morgan-Jones added: "He now feels for the first time he can deal with a 20-year addiction to class A drugs."

Judge Peter Ievins said he had taken the facts of the case into account which meant he could divert from the guidelines.

He gave him a 23 month prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered him to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work and a 20 day rehabilitation activity requirement.

A third charge of handling stolen goods was to lie on file. He was also given a one month suspended sentence for obstructing a police officer in the execution of his duty, which was to run concurrently.