Belfast Metropolitan College porter got £100k worth of drugs by mail from China
A Belfast man who used his position as a porter at Belfast Metropolitan College to get packages of drugs delivered from China to his workplace has narrowly avoided being sent to jail.
A Crown Court judge told Gerard Sands (33), a father-of-one from Rosgoill Drive, that she accepted "your drugs problem heightened your vulnerability".
The drugs posted from Shanghai bore the name 4-MEC, a drug similar to amphetamines and mephedrone which was made illegal in April 2010.
Prosecuting lawyer Gareth Purvis told Belfast Crown Court that in 2010 three packages arrived at Belfast Met from China bearing a name which was not recognised by anyone at the college.
When a staff member opened one of the packages it was found to contain bags of white powder and the PSNI was informed.
In January 2011, a member of staff at the Met reception signed for a package from China. Sands – who worked as a porter but was sacked – told her "they've spelt my name wrong" before taking the package.
Sands' home was searched by police on January 28, 2011 and drugs valued at £100,000 were seized. He was handed an 18-month suspended prison term.