A DRUG dealer who was caught red-handed selling heroin and crack cocaine to a crowd of addicts has been jailed for more than two years.

Jermaine Lewis-Barnes, 28, was arrested by drugs squad officers on patrol in Laindon.

They saw a car stop in a dead end in Newberry Side, before a man got out and met a group of people on the street corner.

They swooped and arrested Lewis-Barnes at about 8.15pm on Tuesday, August 2, as well as 19-year-old Shannon Burrett, who stayed in the car.

They seized 37.7g of heroin and 13.6g of crack cocaine, with a street value of £5,000.

Lewis-Barnes, of Gilbert Street, Enfield, Middlesex, admitted possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin, as well as possession of cannabis.

Burrett, of Ivyhouse Road, Dagenham, admitted possession with intent to supply crack cocaine and heroin.

Ben Gordon, mitigating for Lewis-Barnes, told Basildon Crown Court on Friday that he turned to drug dealing as he was desperate for cash.

He said: “He was homeless at the time and his partner found out that she was pregnant, so he was under significant pressure for money.”

Mr Gordon read out a letter from Lewis-Barnes’ mother, Joan Lewis, pleading for leniency.

She said she depended on her son because she had problems with her back.

Judge Samantha Leigh said she had given some credit to Lewis-Barnes thanks to the letter.

She told him: “You were in an area known for drug dealing. You came out of the car and went round the corner and had four users surrounding you.”

Lewis-Barnes was jailed for two years and six months, while Burrett was given an 18 month prison sentence, suspended for two years.

She was also ordered to complete a thinking skills programme and 100 hours of unpaid work.