A rogue Rolex dealer was busted by police in the middle of buying a watch worth £32,000.
Ashley Smith was carrying out the dodgy sale outside a Sainsbury’s in Newport, Wales.
Cardiff Crown Court heard the 38-year-old was spotted by an officer exchanging plastic bags with Luke Gibson, 31.
Pretending to be an auctioneer, Smith told DC Barrie Redmond he had purchased the distinctive Rolex Sky-Dweller as part of his legitimate business.
But the court was told he was not a registered dealer.
When the officer approached the Volkswagen Tiguan SUV, where Gibson was, he swiftly sped off from the scene.
Prosecutor Roger Griffiths said: ‘DC Redmond thought he had witnessed a drug deal and called for assistance. The Volkswagen made off at high speed.
‘DC Redmond spoke to Smith in the BMW S5 who told him that it wasn’t a drug deal but the sale of a Rolex watch.’
Police later found 429g cannabis at Gibson’s home and he was caught with drugs for a second time four months later.
He later confessed to buying the Rolex with money made trafficking cannabis.
Gibson admitted converting criminal property, possession of criminal property, possession of cannabis with intent to supply, perverting the course of justice and driving without due care and attention.
Meanwhile, Smith pleaded guilty to converting criminal property and acting as a high value dealer whilst unregistered.
A third man, Ryan Morris, who became involved when he lied to police that the Rolex was his, admitted making a written false statement.
All three defendants, of Newport, Gwent were spared jail.
Gibson was given a two year suspended sentence and 200 hours unpaid work.
Smith was given a community order and 180 hours unpaid work and Morris was told to complete a ‘thinking skills’ programme.
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