Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Heroin Addict Taught Children; TEACHER WAS HEROIN ADDICT

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Heroin Addict Taught Children; TEACHER WAS HEROIN ADDICT

Article excerpt

A FORMER teacher and his partner held down responsible jobs for years while hooked on heroin with working addict friends, a court heard.

Paul Ranson, 34, was an IT teacher at Blakeston School in Stockton until a police raid at his home blew wide open his secret life as a drug addict.

He and his partner Suzanne Goode, 36, were Turn to Page 5 "functioning addicts" who had respectable jobs and helped out friends in the same position. Robert Mochrie, defending Ranson at Teesside Crown Court, said: "It is quite an achievement that anybody could hold down that type of job with such a problem.

"This is not a typical drug dealer we're dealing with. "He managed to gain meaningful employment in an incredibly responsible position throughout a number of years, whilst dealing with his demon of heroin addiction. "This was in no way a commercial enterprise. Both addicts, both friends with other addicts, he would willingly help out.

"He has effectively sought to ruin everything he has worked so hard for." Ranson got addicted to heroin while at university. Duncan McReddie, representing Goode, said she was a functioning heroin addict for more than eight years. He said yesterday: "She's a productive industrious member of society who simply happens to have a heroin addiction. She has a proper job, a full-time permanent position with a respectable organisation. "She is part of a group of mutually supportive addicts, people who operate in a very similar way to herself. "People in employment, people who can take a certain amount of heroin and still function as normal members of society. "It was a small network of people who would provide to others almost as an act of friendship. "It is not random commercial street dealing. She operates in a wholly different milieu of people who are like herself." The court was told that the pair did not resort to a life of crime to fund their habits.

Their home on Fox Street, Norton was raided by police on May 19 last year. Goode immediately volunteered two bags of heroin, 10.12g worth pounds 506. Officers also found 555.5 tablets of the Class C drug diazepam, worth up to pounds 1,100, as well as scales carrying traces of heroin and pounds 1,073 cash. …

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