A CRACK cocaine addict sold drugs to teenagers to fund his own habit.

Burnley Crown Court heard that while being investigated for that offence, Alfie Dunston was part of a gang of hooded men seen trying to steal a car off a driveway.

Prosecuting, Stephen Parker said at 4.20pm on May 17 last year, an officer in an unmarked police car saw a Volkswagen Golf near the Lane Ends Pub in Kiddrow Lane, Burnley, which he knew was used by Dunston.

Mr Parker said: “He saw what he believed to be a drug transaction between the defendant and two youths. An arm came out of the window. It looked like drugs and money were being exchanged.”

Mr Parker said when one of the youths was searched police found a £20 bag of cannabis. When he was asked where he got it he said he had bought it, having arranged a meeting by Facebook.

He said: “The police officer asked to look at his phone. There was a conversation on it where he asked someone called Alfie, now known to be this defendant, where the youth asks ‘can I get a 10 bag? I’m near the Lane Ends’. Alfie responded ‘yes I’m coming now’.”

Police seized Dunston’s phone and they found a number of text messages to around seven or eight numbers either agreeing to cannabis deals or advertising the drug for sale.

When police searched Dunston they found £35 cash, while there was a small amount of cannabis in his car.

The court heard that while police were investigating that case, Dunston, of Hudson Street, Burnley, committed the attempted burglary on February 18.

Mr Parker said that the resident of a house in Arkwright Fold, Burnley, was checking the CCTV covering the outside of her home when she noticed that at around 12.30am on February 18 four hooded men walked onto her driveway.

They tried the handles on two of the cars on the driveway before one of the men, Dunston, went to the front door and unsuccessfully tried to get into the house.

Mr Parker said: “The householder said she didn’t recognise the male but one of the vehicles on the drive was a Jaguar. She suspected she was trying to get into the house to get to keys for it.”

Mr Parker said when police studied the footage they recognised father-of-two Dunston as the man trying to get into the house.

Dunston, who has 19 convictions for 46 offences, pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of cannabis and attempted burglary. Defending, Isobel Thomas said his client was addicted to crack cocaine at the time of the drug-dealing offence and was supplying cannabis to a small group of friends to fund his habit.

She said: “The defendant does take full responsibility for his actions.

“He recognises how damaging crack cocaine has been to him and says he will never take that drug again.”

Judge Andrew Woolman jailed Dunston for 18 months.