"a rather unassuming, inoffensive, highly intelligent young man.”
Joy Singarajah, aged 23, of Walthamstow, North East London, was jailed for 15 months for drug dealing. The university student had tried to sell cannabis to a plainclothed police officer.
Ipswich Crown Court heard that the “highly intelligent young man” had turned to drug dealing in order to fund his student fees.
On November 9, 2019, Singarajah was arrested on suspicion of trying to sell cannabis to a plainclothes officer near the Colchester campus of the University of Essex.
He had been serving an eight-month suspended sentence for dangerous driving at the time.
Officers found him with 65.7 grams of cannabis divided into small bags, 3.3 grams of cocaine and a phone containing messages to 93 people, advertising ‘Top-shelf UK strains’ like platinum cookies and gorilla glue.
The university student was arrested again on June 2, 2020, after police entered a property in the same area.
They discovered Singarajah’s “constantly ringing” phone, weighing scales and a tin smelling of cannabis.
Eight days later, while on bail, he was arrested for a third time after being found with 147 grams as a passenger in the back of a car stopped by police on the A12.
Singarajah admitted two counts of possession with intent to supply cannabis, being concerned in the supply of cannabis and possession of cocaine.
In mitigation, Mark Tomassi said: “You have before you a rather unassuming, inoffensive, highly intelligent young man.”
He went on to say that Singarajah dropped out of a degree course after a year at Lincoln.
Singarajah then started studying for a higher national diploma course in Colchester before student finance became a problem.
Mr Tomassi added: “He had been an undergraduate at another university and had no money.
“He felt deeply ashamed and that he hadn’t been able to achieve what was expected.”
“This is a young man with a bit of nous, who left the tracks, got into debt and became involved in criminal activity in order to not show himself up to his parents.”
Mr Tomassi suggested that justice could be fairly served by sparing his client immediate custody.
However, Judge David Pugh said Singarajah had supplied drugs for at least seven months while on a suspended sentence and on bail.
On July 24, 2020, Singarajah was jailed for 15 months, which included three months of the suspended sentence, and ordered the confiscation of £1,010 and an electric scooter Singarajah used for dealing drugs.