A 61 YEAR-OLD Lochgelly man who turned to drugs after suffering personal tragedy narrowly escaped a prison sentence this week.

Appearing for sentencing at Dunfermline Sheriff Court on Wednesday, Arthur Muir, of South Street, had earlier admitted being concerned in the supply of controlled class A drug diamorphine at North Street on March 28 last year.

Depute Fiscal Dev Kapadia told the court that police has stopped Muir in his car after receiving intelligence about his involvement in drugs.

While they were carrying out a search, Muir gestured towards a jacket pocket and told them "I have kit in there."

A Kinder Egg container was recovered with a number of foil wraps containing 2.2 grams of drugs valued at £220.

When being questioned by police, Muir said he buys drugs from someone and sells them on to fund his habit.

Defence solicitor Chris Sneddon said his client had co-operated in the fullest possible way with police.

He said Muir's life went "off track" after suffering personal tragedy including the death of his partner and he developed a "fairly significant" heroin habit.

"He now has a fairly keen insight into the evils of the offence and the seriousness in which the Court deals with such matters." he said.

"Mr Muir has, for most of his life, been a useful member of society. He suffered personal tragedies that led him to make decisions which he regrets.

"He went through particularly dark times and he accepts he behaved appallingly. He regrets both his behaviour and the lifestyle to which he fell."

Sheriff Macnair told Muir: "Drug dealers of any level, those who deal in class A drugs, should expect custodial sentences unless there are very exceptional circumstances.

"I am prepared to impose a high end community sentence but make no mistake, if you breach this in any way, do not expect any mercy."

He sentenced him to a community payback order with a supervision requirement for three years and placed him on a restriction of liberty order requiring him to stay in his home between 7am and 7pm for 12 months.