Teenage dealer jailed after 16-year old died of overdose


Daniel was described as a “ridiculously funny” and “charming” boy by his mum in court

A Croydon teenage dealer, who sold the ecstasy that killed a 16-year-old at an illegal rave, was jailed for five years at Isleworth Crown Court on Friday.

Nicqueel Pitrora, 18, of London Road, Croydon, was sentenced for supplying the drug.

Daniel Spargo-Mabbs, 16, fell unconscious after taking a lethal dose of the Class A party drug with his friends at a warehouse party in Hayes.

He and his friends had clubbed together to buy £80 worth of the drug, and were supplied by Pitrora, the court found.

Known as ‘Shampz’ to the schoolboys, Pitrora was a regular dealer to children and used their pocket money to supplement his benefits, Isleworth Crown Court heard.

On January 17 this year five friends, including Daniel, walked from the Arena tramstop in Croydon and met a man on a bike who handed them three bags of white powder after the deal had been arranged with Pitrora.

Four of the boys, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, dissolved the drug in 100ml bottles of water before making their way to the Silverdale Industrial Estate for the rave.

But Daniel sprinkled around half a gram of the crystalline powder into 500ml of water and drunk it all at once. By 4am his temperature had soared and he collapsed unconscious on the floor.

One friend, who cannot be named, recalled: “About two hours later a friend came up to me and said Daniel had been taken away in an ambulance as he had been acting weirdly.”

He was “pale and shivering” and slumped against a wall, the court heard. Daniel was rushed to Hillingdon hospital by paramedics but nothing could be done to save him.

Paramedic Alex Archie who attended the scene said: “He was making incomprehensible sounds and wriggling. He appeared distressed but was not responsive at all… Daniel showed all the symptoms of someone who had an over-heated body which is a symptom of ecstasy.”

A post-mortem examination revealed the quantity of MDMA found in Daniel – 1.2 mg per litre – was a “concentration associated with fatality”.

The teenager who was a pupil at Archbishop Tenison’s School in south London, died at King’s College Hospital two days later, after being admitted to the specialist liver unit for emergency surgery.

Daniel’s mother Fiona Spargo-Mabbs told the court he was a “ridiculously funny” and “charming” boy who had been voted prom king at his school.

Reducing much of the public gallery to tears, she said: “We sat with him over the next two days and watched him slowly die… I couldn’t let go of his face as I knew when I did it would go cold and then it wouldn’t be warm again.”

She added: “Perhaps it was his curiosity to experience all that life had to offer that led to him making this fatal mistake.”

“This is what Dan’s one bad decision did, this is what the drugs supplied by Nicqueel Pitrora did.”

Daniel was a member of Amnesty International and was known to run errands for pensioners on his paper round.

The court heard he once walked barefoot from Croydon to central London with a group of friends to highlight the plight of deprived communities in the third world.


Nicqueel Pitrora, 18,  was jailed for five years for supplying the drug that led to Daniel’s Spargo-Mabbs death.

Stephen Bailey, defending Pitrora, told the court that the tragic death had “shaken” Pitrora “in a way that it has shaken no others”.

Judge Martin Edmunds, QC, said to Pitrora: “It is apparent that you had made a business of supplying drugs to schoolboys using the street name ‘Shampz’ to supplement your benefit income and fund your own use.

“I am satisfied that you targeted such young people, providing them with a ready source of drugs, fully aware of their age and, whatever the purchasers themselves may have thought, their immaturity and inexperience.

“You yourself were only a few years older but that is a considerable gulf at that age. You had built up a trade with schoolboys and were in no doubt that the supply of MDMA on January 17 this year was to be to such youths.”

Judge Edmunds added: “I keep well in mind that you are to be sentenced for being concerned in supply and not for manslaughter but there can be no questions that you bear a heavy weight of responsibility for the death of Daniel.

“That said no sentence that I can pass can in any way equate to the depth of grief felt by those that loved him, nor the value of that young life lost.”

Speaking after the sentencing hearing Superintendent Des Rock said: “I’m pleased with the sentence that has been handed down today.

“Pitrora has only shown remorse at the last moment for his actions. He will now spend time in prison where I hope that he will reflect on the devastation that he has caused.

“Daniel’s death should serve as a warning to other young people, there can be very serious consequences if you do decide to take drugs. A good night out is not worth someone’s life”, he said.

Co-defendant 21-year-old Ryan Kirk of Puffin Close, Beckenham, Kent was acquitted of supplying the drug on January 17 following an earlier trial at Isleworth Crown Court in July this year.

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