Prosecutors drop anarchist terror charges

helicopter lessons!

From Independent.co.uk by Lizzie Dearden

Original title: Prosecutors drop anarchist terror charges against drug dealer

Toby Shone pleaded guilty to eight drug offences after terror allegations dropped

Prosecutors have dropped anarchist terror charges against a drug dealer.

Toby Shone, 43, was charged with three terrorism offences over an anarchist website that allegedly published bomb-making instructions in February.

During a hearing at Bristol Crown Court, on Wednesday, however, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) offered no evidence on charges of providing a service to allow others to read material that encouraged acts of terrorism, fundraising for terrorism and possessing information useful to a terrorist.

Shone had been held in custody as a terror suspect since February, and the court was told that at points he was kept in a cell for 23-and-a-half hours a day at HMP Wandsworth.

The defendant, of Drybrook in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, has now pleaded guilty to eight separate drug offences including dealing LSD and magic mushrooms.

The court heard that he was a “drugs enthusiast” who had attempted to use cannabis and psychedelic drugs to treat himself for cancer and depression.

But a judge said Shone went beyond personal use or sharing drugs with friends, to “sell or supply drugs, in some cases for profit, to like-minded people”.

Wednesday’s sentencing hearing heard that he had declared no income and received no benefits since 2014, but had spent £30,000 on helicopter lessons and had stored £15,000 in cash in a lock-up unit.

A significant quantity of drugs was found at properties he lived in, including 840 doses of LSD estimated to be worth thousands of pounds.

Judge Christopher Parker QC said Shone had “lived for some considerable time without any visible legitimate means of financial support”.

“You enjoyed an alternative and communal lifestyle outside the mainstream,” he told the defendant. “That lifestyle, as far as you were concerned, also involved the misuse of these drugs.

“Some would say the biochemicals you ingest and the effects of them are really a matter for you, but you went beyond that … By the time you were arrested, you were dealing for gain in a wide variety of dangerous drugs.”

Shone was jailed for a total of three years and nine months for eight drug offences, and made a power gesture with his fist towards the public gallery as he left the court.

He pleaded guilty to possession of LSD, magic mushrooms and the hallucinogen DMT with intent to supply, as well as the possession of DMT, ecstasy and the cannabinoid THC.

Shone also admitted producing cannabis after 36 plants were found at two properties he lived at.

The court heard he organised the sale of drugs through the encrypted Telegram messaging app and a WhatsApp group, and sometimes made arrangements to receive payment through Bitcoin.

“This is not, in my view, a case of somebody simply sharing drugs with fellow enthusiasts,” Judge Parker told Shone. “You were supplying drugs directly to other users.”

The judge said he had received several character references describing the defendant as a “kind-hearted, generous person who means no harm”.

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