Edinburgh lout who targeted England rugby coach caught with cocaine and ecstasy haul

A lout who escaped with a fine after abusing England rugby coach Eddie Jones was jailed today after he was caught with a haul of high purity cocaine.

Tuesday, 27th April 2021, 12:30 pm

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Dale Cleeton, 28, was sentenced to 45 months imprisonment after police found two kilos of the Class A drug in a badly parked car.

A member of the public contacted police to complain that the Peugeot was blocking an entranceway to an Edinburgh street.

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Cocaine lout: Dale Cleeton
Cocaine lout: Dale Cleeton

The High Court in Edinburgh heard that arrangements were made to remove the vehicle "for road traffic reasons" and a search warrant was granted.

Two kilos of cocaine, which was up to 79 per cent pure, were recovered from the boot of the Peugeot.

Cleeton, formerly of Sinclair Place, Edinburgh, earlier admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine between March 20 in 2018 and February 14 in 2019. He also pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of ecstasy during the same period.

Drugs thug Cleeton was part of a mob who targeted England coach Eddie Jones

A judge pointed out that Cleeton had a number of previous convictions, but said the drugs offences were at a much more serious level.

Lady Scott told Cleeton that he would have faced a five year jail sentence, but for his guilty pleas.

The court heard that in the days before the seizure of the high purity cocaine Cleeton was under surveillance by police.

He drove a white van into Westfield Street, in Edinburgh, and was met by an accomplice carrying a cardboard box which he placed in the van.

Cleeton, a plasterer, then drove the van along the street and stopped next to the Peugeot and put the box in the boot.

Advocate depute Eric Robertson said: "The accused Cleeton was described as appearing 'vigilant' throughout, looking around as he placed the cardboard box within the boot of the black Peugeot."

Following the removal of the obstructive Peugeot, Cleeton was observed by police making enquiries attempting to trace the vehicle.

The court heard that police had previously searched an address in Dauline Road, in South Queensferry, which was occupied by Cleeton at the time in March 2018.

They recovered about £350 worth of ecstasy and £3,600 of cocaine, along with 15 kilos of benzocaine, which is commonly used to bulk out cocaine. They also found scales, bowls and a money counting machine.

Officers carried out a further search of his flat in Sinclair Place on February 7 in 2019 and found £15,000 worth of ecstasy tablets and £40,000 worth of cocaine, along with £3,000 in cash hidden in bedding.

Cleeton was arrested by police at the SSE Hydro venue in Glasgow and found to have £770 in cash on him.

Defence counsel Tim Niven-Smith, for Cleeton, said it was accepted that custody was the "inevitable" disposal in the case.

Cleeton was previously fined £54 by a magistrates' court in Manchester in August 2018 after he and others were abusive to England rugby coach Eddie Jones following a Scottish victory against England in the Six Nations. During the abuse at Manchester Oxford Road railway station Mr Jones was called a "baldy c***".

Cleeton's co-accused in the drugs case, Jordan Combe, 24, of South Gyle Park, Edinburgh, was ordered to carry 250 hours unpaid work under a community payback order.

The gas engineer earlier admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine on November 9 in 2018 when he handed over the box containing two kilos of cocaine to Cleeton.

Lady Scott pointed out that he was aged 22 at the time of the offence and there was no financial gain on his part.

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