A MECHANIC from Chard has been handed a four-and-a-half year jail sentence after being found guilty of possessing heroin with intent to supply.

Police found more than 40g of the Class A drug, with a street value of £1660, in David Newby’s car when they searched it at Keele Services in Staffordshire last May following a tip-off from the public.

The 54-year-old, of Coronation Street, stood trial at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court yesterday (February 11) after pleading not guilty to the charge.

The court heard how Newby denied knowing the substance was heroin, but the jury found him guilty and Judge Paul Glenn sentenced him to four-and-a-half years in prison.

Chard neighbourhood beat manager, PC Paul Thomas, said: “This was a significant amount of drugs taken off the streets that was heading to the Chard area.

“The case was successful thanks to intelligence from members of the public which led to the stop check of Newby’s car in Staffordshire while he was travelling back to Chard.

“The thoroughness of the subsequent investigation has in turn resulted in the substantial sentence.

"This sends a clear message to anybody who gains financial reward from drug dealing and supply: if you deal in drugs we will find you, we will arrest you and you will be put in front of the courts to face the consequences.”

Anyone with information about drug-related crime is asked to call the police on 101.