Preston cannabis farm yield could have made £22,000 of street deals

A man who grew a cannabis farm at a house in Preston has had his 16 month jail term suspended for 18 months,

Monday, 18th January 2021, 3:45 pm

Daniel Stephen Norris, 27, of Arnside Road, Ashton-On-Ribble, Preston, had enough cannabis to make up to £22,400 in street deals, a probe found.

Preston Crown Court heard on November 26, 2019, officer PC Grice attended an address on Elmsley Street, Preston, following an anonymous report of two men fighting inside the address, before moving out onto the street.

The caller also said that a cannabis farm could be seen inside the address from the open front door.

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Crown Court

Officers decided to enter in case anyone was injured inside.

Prosecuting, Peter Connick said: " PC Grice, as soon as he entered the address, was met with a strong smell of cannabis. At this point, he had walked into the downstairs hall through a small vestibule.

" There was a bright, white light coming from the door nearest to the stairs. When he opened the door to that room, he found a large growing tent which filled the space of

the room. An extractor fan was also operating.

" PC Grice unzipped the tent and saw, in the right hand corner of the tent, 56 adolescent cannabis plants in soil in small pots."

Odfficers also found lighting was suspended from the top of the tent, a large metal extractor with foil-lined extraction tubing, a netted, green laundry airer with

shelves to dry out cannabis, metal transformers and adaptors.

There were around 15 larger, soil filled pots suspected to have been used for a recently harvested crop as some contained dead stalks.

A metal dome topped with a metal mesh contained a large amount of green plant matter.

Plant food containers and water tanks were also discovered.

Two Samsung mobile phones, a roll of clear sandwich bags and a set of weighing scales were found in a bedroom with Norris' driving licence and mobile bill addressed to him.

Two upstairs bedrooms also had a growing tent set-up in each of them but were not in use.

Electricity Northwest confirmed the electricity meter had been bypassed.

Norris handed himself in on December 3 at Preston Police Station and confessed he had been operating the farm for six months to pay-off an £8,000 drug debt.

He pleaded guilty to producing a class B drug and illegally abstracting electricity.

Defending, Beverley Hackett said the dad's drug habit had started spiralling out of control, but he was now distancing himself from people he had mixed with, and has since obtained employment.

She read a letter from his grandma in which she said growing up in a single parent family had affected him a great deal and he got into some bad company, with people taking advantage of his fragile mental state.

She added: " I know he has done wrong but the Dan I know just wants to make it right."

Imposing a rehabilitation requirement and 80 hours unpaid work, Judge Sara Dodd said she felt there was a realistic prospect of rehabilitation.

She added: "Whilst you were aware of the scale of the operation you had no influence on those higher up the chain.

"It was an operation which clearly had capabilities to provide commercial level dealing."

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