Anger as sheriff jails man who threatened drug dealer and destroyed heroin stash
A SHERIFF was condemned yesterday for jailing a vigilante who stormed into a drug dealer's home and threatened to kill him before flushing a stash of heroin down the toilet.
Peter Drummond, 26, took the law into his own hands after his brother-in-law became addicted to the drug.
He went to the home of John Nellies and berated him for causing misery to families before flushing five bags of heroin down the toilet, Perth Sheriff Court was told.
Drummond, who was reported to the police by one of Nellies' customers, shook his head in disbelief as he was jailed for two months by Sheriff Robert McCreadie.
Outside the court, Thomas Brown, a family friend, said: "Jailing him for what he did is ridiculous. It is a ludicrous decision and even the lawyer was shaking his head. Heroin is killing the community and it has been tearing Peter's family apart."
He added: "Instead of (going] to jail, he should be getting an award for trying to do his best to clean out the drug dealers."
Drummond, of Hatton Place, Rattray, who admitted breaching the peace at the drug dealer's home in Emma Street, Blairgowrie, on Sunday, told police after his arrest that his family had been blighted by heroin.
He had gone to Nellies' flat after learning that his brother-in-law had been there that day to buy drugs. "Over the last six or seven months my whole family has been in hell," Drummond said. "My brother-in-law is on smack and he is getting it from the people there.
"It was a spur-of-the-moment thing. I shouldn't have done it, but these people are ruining my family by supplying heroin. It is causing a family crisis and everyone is going through hell.
"Things have been so bad that I lost it and decided to try to stop the drug-dealing going on."
Drummond added: "I know I have done wrong. I'm sorry. I know I went about things the wrong way, but things just got on top of me."
Janine Bates, the depute fiscal, told the court that Nellies was an habitual drug abuser and known as a dealer in heroin.
At 5:30pm on Sunday, Drummond, who was under the influence of alcohol, arrived at Nellies' home and demanded entry. He then began shouting and swearing at Nellies.
Ms Bates told the court: "He (Drummond] continued to shout and swear and threatened to kill Nellies if he continued to supply heroin to members of his family. He recovered five bags of heroin from the living room and flushed it down the toilet in order to prevent other persons from obtaining it."
Steve Lafferty, Drummond's solicitor, appealed to the court to have his punishment limited to a fine due to the "quite unusual" circumstances of the case.
He said that Drummond, who admitted a number of previous convictions, had no other criminal charges pending.
But Sheriff McCreadie ignored the plea and told Drummond he should have contacted the police. "You can't take matters into your own hands the way you did," he said.
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