An Ammanford father-to-be who turned to dealing in cocaine when he became unable to fund his own drug addiction has been sentenced to over two years in prison.

When James Cooke’s child is born in August, he will be four months into his 28-month sentence.

On the evening of March 21, 2021, Cooke travelled from his home in Tabernacle Road, Glanaman to the Penlan area of Swansea to peddle the Class A drug.

He was observed by officers but when one of them approached Cook the defendant made off, discarding wraps of high-purity cocaine into the bushes. 

When caught, police described his behaviour as ‘erratic’. 

Cooke was found to be carrying £789 in cash and an investigation of his phone showed he had been involved in a prolific level of cocaine and cannabis dealing over the previous five months.

The messages included items from a contact who offered to act as a ‘runner’ in helping Cooke make his deliveries.

Cooke pleaded guilty to possessing cocaine with intent to supply when he appeared at Swansea Crown Court.

His solicitor, Mr Andrew Evans, said the case had been ‘a watershed moment’ for the Ammanford pet food company worker which had enabled him to open up and be honest with his partner and his father about the extent of his drug addiction.

Mr Evans added that Cook had previously been involved in charitable work at a local community centre and foodbank, and he and his partner are expecting their first child in August.

“This is not a Class A drug dealer who does not know the sentence which faces him if caught,” commented Judge Geraint Walters when passing sentence.

“If you gamble, sometimes you lose, and that is where you are.”

Cooke was sentenced to two years and four months in prison.

He will serve up to half of that period in custody before being released on licence to serve the remainder in the community.

The judge ordered that the money found on the defendant is forfeited and given to South Wales Police for use in combating the drugs trade.