Jail term for drug dealer

Marlon Leiba
Marlon Leiba
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A DRUG dealer has finally been jailed - seven years after being caught dealing cocaine to a police officer.

Marlon Leiba was secretly filmed as he supplied crack cocaine to an undercover policewoman two days running.

Preston Crown Court heard how a police officer rang Leiba from a telephone box near Blackpool North railway station and asked him for “white”.

The 32-year-old arranged to meet her and handed her a small wrap in exchange for £25 cash.

The next day, the policewoman rang the same mobile number from the same phone box and asked for more cocaine.

Leiba approached her, spat a small wrap from his mouth and placed it on a nearby wall.

He was, again, paid £25.

Leiba was caught dealing as part of Operation Nimrod, a Lancashire police initiative targeting dealers and users on the resort’s streets, in April 2005.

His name and details were circulated as wanted and he was arrested three years later in Leeds in May 2008.

Leiba should have appeared for sentencing in November 2008, but failed to turn up.

But the law finally caught up with him after he moved to London.

He appeared before magistrates in North London last December for possessing cannabis, which led to him appearing at Preston Crown Court yesterday.

He had pleaded guilty to two offences of supplying crack cocaine – a Class A drug.

A judge sentenced him to two years and three months in prison.

Leiba asked for possessing cocaine in May 2008 to be taken into consideration and also admitted a bail offence.

Fraser Livesey, defending Leiba, told the court he had not significantly re-offended during the three years between the offence and being arrested.

Mr Livesey said he had not attended court to “face the music” in October or November of 2008 because he had become a father and wanted to be a good dad to his child.

But the judge sentencing him said Leiba simply couldn’t bear to hear his fate.

Judge Mr Justice Butterfield said: “You couldn’t face up to what you knew was going to happen to you when you appeared for sentence. It seems to me you should be sentenced as if appearing in 2008/2009 when others charged at the same time were in court.”