A 45-year-old man who tried to swallow a £10 bag of heroin to hide it from police has dodged jail.

Graham Walker from Saltcoats appeared at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court last week and pled guilty to two charges. His not guilty plea to a third charge was accepted.

Officers carried out a drugs search warrant at Walker’s home in Giffen Road on November 23.

During the search, Walker asked to use the toilet and as police escorted him, he reached into his pocket and recovered a wrap. He tried to put it in his mouth to swallow, but police were able to stop him.

The package was found to be a £10 bag of diamorphine.

Solicitor Fraser Alexander said that his client previously had a drug problem but was getting his life together and that he was on his “last warning” from his mother.

Sheriff Alistair Watson told Walker: “The attempted disposal of the drug is in my view worse than the possession. It goes to the heart of the attempt to deal with these matters.

“You’ve got a terrible record, but I have to recognise that that record is of a much younger man.”

Sentencing Walker to 80 hours of unpaid work, Sheriff Watson added: “Understand that this is an alternative to custody but I’m giving you the benefit that this is some time since you have been in trouble.”