Jailed Mansfield mum fails in bid to see her baby

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A MUM from Mansfield was jailed two months after giving birth has failed to have her sentence cut so she can look after her baby.

Samantha Mellors (21), of Harcourt Street, was jailed for a year at Nottingham Crown Court in February after she admitted possessing heroin and breaching a suspended sentence.

Despite hearing she has now ditched the partner she claims got her into trouble, and kicked her drug habit, three senior judges today (Friday) refused to set her free.

Mrs Justice Thirlwall told the court of appeal Mellors was given a suspended sentence at Lincoln Crown Court in March 2009 after she was caught trying to smuggle drugs to her then-boyfriend in prison.

The following year she was in a car with the same boyfriend, and his drug dealer, which was stopped by police, the court heard.

Mellors was taken to the police station where, before police could search her, she brought a package containing 27 wraps of heroin out of her bra strap, the judge said.

Prosecutors accepted Mellors - who gave birth shortly before her sentencing - was not a drug dealer, and was handed the package by someone else when the car was stopped.

Errol Ballentyne, for Mellors, claimed her previous partner and father of her child dragged her into a life of crime, and she has since split up with him and broken free of her heroin addiction.

He said she wants to look after the infant, who is currently with a family member, and has been working hard in prison to put her past behind her.

Despite his claims she should have got a shorter jail term, Mrs Justice Thirlwall, sitting with Lord Justice Stanley Burnton and Judge Anthony Russell QC, rejected her claims for a sentence cut.

She ruled: “We have been shown an enormous range of certificates which are testimony to this woman’s hard work whilst she has been in custody.

“She is drugs-free and, we are told, no longer in a relationship with the father of her child and wishes to take responsibility for the care of her child. We very much hope that all of these matters signify a change in direction of this appellant’s life.

“However, in our judgment, the judge approached the sentencing exercise with care and came to the correct conclusion.”