Personal trainer from Yorkshire who started dealing cocaine after losing clients is jailed

A personal trainer who turned cocaine dealer after losing clients due to the Covid-19 lockdown has been jailed for more than three years.

Benjamin Catterill, 37, saw his client base slump during the pandemic and decided to try his hand at drug dealing to make money.

But he was caught when officers stopped his VW Golf in Chapeltown, Leeds, in the early hours of November 4.

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They found wraps of cocaine worth £1,740 hidden in his boxer shorts, Leeds Crown Court was told.

Benjamin Catterill, 37, saw his client base slump during the pandemic and decided to try his hand at drug dealing to make money.

Catterill, of Yeadon near Leeds, admitted possessing cocaine with intent to supply and possessing an offensive weapon. He was jailed three years and two months.

Robert Galley, prosecuting, said: "He said he was a physical training instructor. He said lockdown had limited his ability to make money.

"He had seen others taking 'sniff' at parties and had decided to sell them (drugs) to make money."

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Catterill has previous convictions for robbery, wounding, grievous bodily harm, and wounding.

Robin Frieze, mitigating, said: "He came out of prison after his last sentence and managed to make a pretty good fist of personal training.

"It was something he had been interested in. He trained himself and had a number of clients, but lockdown put an end to that.

"He got into financial difficulty and he saw the opportunity to try and make some money from seeing others doing it.

"The defendant is not trying to put forward an excuse or personal circumstances that he was pressured into doing it. He completely understands that what he did was wrong."

Mr Frieze added: "He has some mental health issues. He suffers from bipolar, which has been a feature of his offending in the past."