• Tue. May 21st, 2024

Oxford man held drugs in exchange for ‘food and shelter’

Byoxfordnewspaper

Sep 2, 2022

A man caught with 10 wraps of heroin and cocaine claimed he was holding them in exchange for 'food and shelter'.

Boubou Djanka, 28, was caught with the class A drugs after he was followed by patrolling police officers on August 30, concerned they had just witnessed a drugs exchange.

Appearing before Oxford Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, Djanka, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to simple possession of the class A drugs.

But Claudia Hylton, mitigating, said her client had been ‘used’ by another individual in order to hold drugs.

Djanka had been homeless after losing his job during the pandemic. “The individual he was staying with said he would provide him with food and shelter if he held these drugs in his possession.”

He did not use drugs himself, his solicitor added.

Since his arrest on Tuesday, he had spent two nights in the police cells, the court heard.

The Paris-born defendant planned to go and live with a sibling in London on his release from custody.

The magistrates accepted Djanka’s account that he had been coerced into holding the illegal drugs. They imposed a six month conditional discharge, meaning he will only be punished for the offence if he gets into further trouble.

His lack of income meant they would waive the payment of costs to the Crown Prosecution Service, they said. The victim surcharge of £22 was deemed paid by time served in the cells.

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This story was written by Tom Seaward. He joined the team in 2021 as Oxfordshire's court and crime reporter.

To get in touch with him email: Tom.Seaward@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @t_seaward