A drug addict has been jailed for nine years after admitting possessing £50,000-worth of heroin with intent to supply.
Michael David Nelson was caught with 207 grams of the class A drug, which he said he was holding for someone.
At the Court of General Gaol Delivery, Nelson, who lives at Waterloo Road, Ramsey, was also banned from driving for 10 years after admitting two other offences of dangerous driving and driving while disqualified.
Nelson tried to evade officers by driving off after they found the drugs.
Defence advocate David Reynolds said that the 49-year-old had lived on the island for 12 years and had suffered from addiction to heroin for around 30 years.
‘Unfortunately he relapsed when he was having difficulties,’ said the advocate.
‘He was on the waiting list with the drug and alcohol team and was using his benefits to self-medicate.
‘He got himself into far more serious offences trying to pay for his own addiction.
‘He was buying drugs for his own use, but the drugs he had, he was going to supply to another person. He got into debt.’
Nelson appeared via video link from the prison and said: ‘I owed a bill. I got told to keep hold of someone else’s stuff to clear my bill.
‘I wasn’t selling. I was just holding it to pass on.’
Mr Reynolds said that Nelson had been in custody since January 14.
Deemster Bernard Richmond told Nelson while passing sentence: ‘You more than anybody should understand what a pernicious and life altering drug heroin is.
‘It ruins lives and the profits are vast. But they couldn’t do it without people like you holding it or selling it. You know the effects of heroin.
‘This island has one of the most severe sentencing regimes for drugs in Europe and it has it for a reason.
‘Because if there is no control of drugs it could become widespread and dangerous.
‘You’re nearly 50, you’re going to waste the rest of your life.’
Nelson was also ordered to retake his test at the end of the driving ban.