Three young people from Wigton have admitted dealing the class A drug cocaine - but one said she was being controlled by her then boyfriend.

At Carlisle Crown Court, Maverick Charters, 20, and Holly McGregor, 26, entered guilty pleas to supplying the drug on multiple occasions between August 2017 and March the following year.

Charters, of Highfield Court, Wigton, entered his plea on the basis he was dealing to fund his habit. McGregor, of Springfields, Wigton, entered her plea while claiming she was controlled by Charters during a relationship.

A third defendant, 18-year-old Morgan Jackson, from Curthwaite, Wigton, admitted possessing cocaine with intent to supply, being concerned in supplying cannabis, and being concerned in the acquisition and retention of criminal property.

Prosecutor Beccy McGregor said she did not accept that Charters was simply dealing to fund his habit. “This is drugs activity over a number of months,” said the lawyer.

She said text messages suggested Charters was controlling Holly McGregor, with one revealing that he had asked her to go to a music festival and deal for him. He was dealing substantial amounts of cocaine, she said.

Turning to Jackson’s offences, the prosecutor said police seized £3,500 from his home - money he admitted he was keeping for other dealers.

Police began their investigation after being called to Skinburness Drive, Silloth, on October 18 last year to investigate a report of youths taking drugs. The group included Jackson, and 19-year-old Reece Edmondson, of Central Terrace, Silloth.

Phone messages between him and Jackson talked of drug transactions.

Clare Thomas, for Edmondson, said he was terrified by what he faced. “He is very well thought of by his employer,” said the barrister. Seriously injured in a motorbike accident, he foolishly self-medicated with cannabis.

Edmondson admitted being concerned in the supply of cannabis.

Judge Peter Davies imposed 12 month jail, suspending the term for two years. The teenager must attend 25 rehabilitation activity days and observe a six month 8pm to 8am curfew. The judge told Edmondson: “Who don’t know who you are selling to. You might be exploiting people who who suffer from mental health problems, which cannabis makes worse.

“So you are harming other people by trading in this stuff.”

Jackson, Charters, and McGregor will be sentenced on March 29 after a hearing to determine the extent of their involvement in the admitted offences.