A Huntsville man is facing a lengthy prison stay after his life became unraveled through drug addiction and trafficking.
Last week, Richard Firth, 33, pled guilty to trafficking both cocaine and fentanyl, as well as breaching court-ordered conditions.
Court heard that in August 2018, the OPP launched an investigation into Firth after they became suspicious that he was involved in drug activity.
On Aug. 15, 2018, the OPP executed a search warrant on Firth’s Main Street residence in Huntsville and turned up 46 grams of cocaine and crack cocaine, 5.5 grams of fentanyl, a number of prescription pills, digital scales, five cell phones, a debt list, and a machete. The OPP pegged the value of the drugs at about $8,000.
They also learned that Firth was under conditions not to possess any drug paraphernalia and that he was wanted on a warrant out of the Durham Region.
Defence lawyer Leonardo Russomano said Firth was also a victim of addiction and the drug trade. Russomano said Frith was the “low man on the totem pole” regarding drug sales.
“He wasn’t the person holding the money, he was the one exposed to the risk,” said Russomano. “He was doing the hand-to-hand transactions…and supplying his own addiction. He wasn’t in it for money.”
Russomano said Firth is now ready to attend rehab and turn his life around. He argued that Firth should have another 100 days in custody on top of the time he has already served in custody. With extra credit for serving time during the pandemic and pre-trial custody, the total sentence would amount to roughly 14 months.
The attorney for the Crown said that sentence was not appropriate and suggested something in the neighborhood of roughly two years in custody. She said although 5.5 grams of fentanyl might not seem like a lot, it translates to roughly 55 single uses on the street, and fentanyl is one of the most deadly drugs available.
Firth addressed the court, telling them about everything he’s lost through addiction — house, car, friends, employment — and in particular time with his daughter.
The judge told the court that he needed time to consider the submission before he imposed sentence, and sentencing was postponed until next month.
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