A WIDNES shop owner was captured on his own CCTV footage dealing cocaine and heroin from behind the counter.

Sohail Arif, 27, mistakenly provided evidence to his own offending after choosing to peddle class A drugs from the News and Booze Stop in Widnes.

Prosecuting, Chris Taylor told Liverpool Crown Courts on Tuesday that officers raided the convenience store on Victoria Road on September 17 last year.

They found a gas lighter canister filled with wraps of Class A drugs behind the counter in the shop.

“The officers seized the CCTV and various clips showed the defendant serving customers with the non-traditional items of Class A drugs,” Mr Taylor said.

“The officer from the drug unit indicated there were drugs to the total of £300.

“The court cannot ignore that the defendant was using the business as a cover.”

Runcorn and Widnes World: News and Booze Stop WidnesNews and Booze Stop Widnes (Image: Google Maps)

Defending, Paul Wood said Arif, of Mansfield Crescent, Brierfield, had a ‘lack of maturity’ that contributed to his offending.

Recorder Paul Taylor responded to this, saying: “I have never seen a defendant provide the evidence of his offending himself on camera.”

Mr Wood responded that his client ‘regrets’ the decision to ‘peddle drugs’.

Concluding, Recorder Paul Taylor said: “It seems fairly likely you did not and still do not get the harm you have caused.

“These courts are replete with defendants, men and women, who are addicted to class A drugs.

“You are part of the problem.”

Before sentencing Arif, Mr Taylor added: “You do not seem to have the qualifications of a proper criminal.”

The defendant was handed a 32-month custodial sentence for each charge of the supply of class A drugs. Both sentences will run concurrently and he will be released on licence after serving half.