A DRUG dealer who stole £16,500 from his mum's bank account has been jailed after a police raid in Hereford.

Marc Hounslow and Christopher Mitchell both admitted possession of class A drugs with intent to supply and were jailed at Worcester Crown Court on Wednesday.

Hounslow, aged 32, of no fixed abode also admitted theft after stealing the cash from his mother's ISA account, an act which the judge described as 'a temptation he could not resist'. The money was never recovered from him.

John Evans, prosecuting, said both men were arrested at a flat in Hereford on December 4 last year in the company of known drug users.

Upon arrest Mitchell, 38, of Moor Street, Hereford, tried to dispose of a package out of the flat window which contained 9.68g of crack cocaine with a street value of £1,050. He also had £709 in cash.

Hounslow was found with seven individual 0.1g wraps of heroin and a large 2.8g wrap of the same drug. The value of the drugs was placed at £350.

Two mobile phones seized by police also showed evidence of drug dealing and officers also found drugs paraphernalia, rolls of cling film and digital weighing scales.

In police interview Hounslow answered no comment to questions. Mitchell denied selling drugs but then answered no comment to further questions.

Mitchell had previous convictions for possession with intent to supply and a conviction for conspiracy to supply class A drugs from June 2008.

He was jailed for eight years for his role in the conspiracy.

Mitchell was jailed for possession of heroin, crack cocaine and cannabis with intent to supply on March 21, 2016 and was on licence when the Hereford drugs offence was committed.

Hounslow has previous convictions for theft and burglary, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, common assault and criminal damage.

Richard Hull, for Hounslow, said his client had been using his mother's account to draw his benefits and had admitted supplying heroin.

He said: "Given that the theft was against his own mother, a breach of trust was involved.

"It is something that has weighed heavily on Mr Hounslow's mind that he stole a significant sum of money from his own mother."

He added: "He feels he has wasted a good portion of his life in prison."

Mr Hull said his client had been 'sofa surfing' and had no permanent accommodation and, as a result, fell back into drug use.

His client had been on remand since December 5 last year.

Mark Thompson, for Mitchell, asked the judge not to impose the seven year minimum sentence which can be imposed on a 'third strike' drug dealer.

He said his client had at one stage been living in Bristol where he managed to get himself drug free, 'somewhere nice to live' and a job.

However, he said since then there had been 'a sea-change' and added: "Unfortunately for him it didn't hold. He missed his family in Hereford."

Mr Thompson said Mitchell began dealing drugs to support his own chronic addiction, arguing that the case was very different to County Lines drug dealing and 'cuckooing' operations run by people 'miles away from those communities that are being ravaged'.

Judge Jim Tindal accepted that it had not been a large scale, County Lines operation. "Nevertheless, it was serious" he said.

He said he would impose the minimum seven year term for Mitchell, jailing him for 67 months which was the seven years with a reduction in the length of the term to reflect his guilty plea.

Judge Tindal jailed Hounslow for four years, describing the theft from his mother as 'a severe breach of trust'.

He also authorised the forfeiture and destruction of the drugs.