A YOUNG county lines drug dealer was caught by police as he worked a “day shift” near a Carlisle primary school.

Nineteen-year-old Sergej Aleksandrvicius was approached by police at around 10.30am on February 21 in the Harraby area.

“The defendant was found in an area behind Petteril Bank school in Carlisle, on a path near a river bank,” prosecutor Beccy McGregor told the city’s crown court.

Police approached the teenager to search him. The prosecutor said:“The defendant initially tried to break free from officers. He was effectively wrestled to the ground by them.”

Aleksandrvicius was carrying 74 wraps of heroin and 68 wraps of high-purity crack cocaine. The drugs had a street value of £5,500.

Aleksandrvicius, of Eccles, Greater Manchester, also had a mobile phone, with messages telling the teenager where to sell the drugs.

In a statement, Aleksandrvicius said he became involved following a chance encounter a fortnight before. “He was offered free weed if he agreed to sell in another area,” said Ms McGregor. “Effectively he would be looked after for around a month.

“He was in financial difficulties so he agreed to do so. He was given a mobile phone, a SIM card and driven to Carlisle.”

She added: “He only did as he was directed to do. He regretted getting involved and started to think that actually these people would not look after him.

“He felt he couldn’t get out of the position he was in.”

Aleksandrvicius admitted possessing heroin and crack cocaine with intent to supply.

Kim Whittlestone, defending, said: “Unfortunately he has been persuaded by others to get involved in crime. He wants to seek to put that behind him.”

Judge Andrew Jefferies QC said a deterrent sentence was needed, and imposed 40 months’ youth detention. “You were effectively working a day shift selling drugs in this local area,” said the judge. “This is a county lines case of dealing.”

The prosecution is the latest county lines drugs prosecution at Carlisle Crown Court.

The phrase refers not only to the transportation and dealing of drugs across counties but specifically the exploitation of vulnerable children and adults by city-based gangs who want to exploit other markets by moving drugs around the country.