A leading member of a drug dealing organised crime group has lost an appeal against his sentence – and had his jailed term increased instead.
Garry Dentith, 42, was jailed for seven years and three months in January this year after admitting the importation and supply of cannabis and five counts of money laundering involving £192,855 of criminal proceeds.
Dentith, of Princes Street in Douglas, was arrested as part of Operation Artemis which smashed an organised crime group operating in the island.
He was said in court to have played a leading role in the gang and was ‘high up in the chain in the Isle of Man’.
Dentith appealed against the sentence handed down by Deemster Cook, his lawyer arguing it was ‘manifestly excessive’.
In a judgment, the appeal court ruled that the Deemster had got it wrong – but that he had actually been too lenient and erred by giving a reduction in sentence.
Judge of appeal Anthony Cross KC and Deemster Richard Pratt increased the sentence from seven years three months’ custody to seven years six months’ custody.
They said: ‘The appellant is a man who has a criminal record. He had been a drug dealer for a considerable period of time.
‘He is part of an organised crime group. His offending was so serious that a lengthy gaol term was required.’
The Deemsters pointed out: ‘This court will interfere where a sentence is excessive to such an extent so as to satisfy this court there was a failure to apply the right principles.
‘This court will also intervene in the opposite way if necessary. If the court below fails to apply the right principles then this court will also intervene to increase the sentence.’
Dentith’s lawyer Paul Rodgers had argued that Deemster Cook had erred in principle in applying a discount of only 3% for the appellant’s human rights and those of his partner and stepson.
But the appeal judges said no such rights were triggered at all in this case and the woman named in court was the appellant’s girlfriend, not his partner and the child was not his stepson but the child of his then girlfriend.
They said they regretted to say that Mr Rodgers’ submissions ignored the reality of the evidence.