‘Cambodia aid worker’ spared jail

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A COCKFIELD man has been spared jail for drugs and handling offences after he told a judge he plans to join his mother as an aid worker in Cambodia.

Thomas Carter-Cairnes had been facing a short spell in prison after he admitted handling £1,500 worth of stolen goods and being caught in possession of cannabis and ketamine.

The 20-year-old also still owed £1,355 in court fines, having paid just £55 and district judge David Cooper, sitting at Bury St Edmunds Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday said he was minded to send Carter-Cairnes to prison for six weeks both for the new convictions and in lieu of the fines.

He was, however, persuaded against it by Sarah Smeeth from the probation service who said it would jeopardise Carter-Cairnes’ chances of going to Cambodia.

Prosecutor Roz Cappleman told the court that the stolen goods were a laptop, purse and bank cards stolen.

“They were items from a burglary in Cockfield which was nothing to do with this gentleman,” she said.

He was also caught with 3.1 grams of ketamine with a street value of £25, and 0.5 grams of cannabis with a street value of £5, and had six previous convictions, she added.

Carter-Cairnes, of Home Meadow, who represented himself in court, said his mother lived in Cambodia where she was an aid worker and that he wanted to join her at the end of July. He said he had lost his job in the NHS as a result of his last conviction and was currently unemployed.

Judge Cooper described Carter-Cairnes as ‘a very intelligent young man’ with ‘low ethical standards’.

He sentenced him to a curfew with electronic tag until July 4 and eight weeks in a young offenders’ institute suspended for a year. Carter-Cairnes was also given until July 5 to pay off his fines or he will have to reappear before the judge.