A university student made more than £10,000 in cash by selling laughing gas canisters outside a pub.
Kiasar Markl was snagged after police caught him dealing nitrous oxide, a psychoactive substance which is banned for sale for recreational use.
A court heard the 22-year-old man’s flat was raided following his arrest outside the pub on June 4 last year. Around 3,000 nitrous oxide canisters were found on his person and in the address in Wallasey, Merseyside.
But the final-year student was spared jail yesterday at Liverpool Crown Court.
Judge David Swinnerton suspended Markl’s eight-month jail term for 18 months after he admitted possession of a psychoactive substance with intent to supply and possession of criminal property.
The judge stressed nitrous oxide “is not harmless,” Liverpool Echo reports.
He said: “It is not as harmful as heroin or crack cocaine. If you were selling those, you would be going to prison for a long time.
“But it is harmful. It can cause death.
“That possibility is a rare one, but nonetheless you were making a lot of money from selling illegal something that is illegal and potentially harmful. You described what you were doing as stupidity, but it was also greed.
“I accept you were naive. If you had thought about the consequences, I don’t suppose you would have done it.
“I will treat you as someone foolish and naive and who does genuinely regret it. You are going to have to rebuild your reputation.
“I hope sincerely that you have learned your lesson from this. Time will tell.”
Markl had been selling boxes of 20 for £5 each. Monies totalling £10,280 were discovered in his bedroom in Leasowe, Merseyside.
The defendant, who has no previous convictions, is now continuing his studies at university.
Nitrous oxide is typically used in surgery and dentistry, for its anaesthetic and pain-reducing effects. The sale of nitrous oxide for its psychoactive effects was made illegal after the Psychoactive Substances Act in 2016.