People line up to buy drugs outside dad’s apartment while his kids sleep inside

A father sold crack and heroin to lines of people lining up outside his apartment while he was supposed to look after his children.

Martin Maddocks kept drugs with two machetes at the Birkenhead apartment where he looked after his two youngest children.

The 44-year-old had 206 drug envelopes in the apartment, which he was selling to customers lining up in £ 10 deals.

Christopher Hopkins, prosecuting today at Liverpool Crown Court, explained that police were made aware of “drug trafficking complaints” from an apartment in Borough Road, which they visited on July 4 last year .

Mr Hopkins said: “Officers described seeing a line of men gathering in a closed alley.”

They watched Maddocks lead some of the men to his apartment, where they later reunited with his two children.

When the police entered the apartment, Maddocks was arrested and “tried to swallow an envelope of heroin”.

Mr Hopkins explained that in a coat in the bathroom, police found 158 envelopes of crack cocaine and 48 envelopes of heroin, which were part of ‘£ 10 in transactions’.

Officers also found two machetes, he told the court.

Mr Hopkins said: “Officers noted that the accused had an iPhone that kept ringing when spoken to at the scene.”

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Maddocks told police he was dealing “for the purpose of paying off a drug debt” and that there was a “degree of coercion” which was accepted by the prosecution.

Maddocks has 15 convictions for 28 offenses, including his involvement in smuggling heroin to the Isle of Man for which he was jailed for five years in 2008.

Martine Snowdon, defending, explained that Maddocks did not “make financial or business gain” but financed her own habit by negotiating after being “pressured” to pay off a drug debt.

Ms Snowdon said Maddocks’ relapse into drug trafficking was “sparked by the breakdown of a long-term relationship with the mother of his two children”.

She explained that Maddocks has a “background of depression” for which he is medicated and in the past has had “suicidal thoughts”.

Ms Snowdon explained that Maddocks was “afraid of violent repercussions” if he did not agree to sell the drugs.

She told the court he was reducing his methadone prescription and working with Wirral Ways to Recovery, a service that helps people with drug addiction.

Maddocks admitted possession with the intention of providing both crack and heroin.

The judge, Recorder Tom Gilbart, noted that Maddocks has “a long history of drug problems” and suffered from “childhood difficulties”.

Recorder Gilbart said he admitted Maddocks had made “significant efforts to be sober” since his arrest, adding that his respect for the probation service was described as “excellent.”

The judge said: “It’s made worse by the presence of weapons, the presence of young children and your previous convictions.”

Recorder Gilbart said it would be “utterly mystifying to any parent” why “you would have these young children present when you had people in your apartment while you supplied them with drugs.”

The judge said it was “a great shame” to see Maddocks in the dock and it was clear he had made “great efforts to move forward”.

He was imprisoned for two years.

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