A DAD’S cannabis use increased after he spent time in intensive care following brain surgery, a court has heard.
Dean Jones consequently decided to start growing the drug at his Netherton home to save money but his secret cannabis farm was discovered when police called round on an unrelated matter.
He had been far more successful than he had anticipated and had grown so much in the seven weeks before it was discovered that he was planning to sell the excess to close friends.
Jones, 49, walked free from Liverpool Crown Court on Tuesday, April 28, after the judge accepted that he was lightly convicted and had no drug convictions.
But sentencing him to eight months imprisonment suspended for two years Judge Brian Cummings, QC, warned him that if he breaches it he would be going to prison.
He also ordered him to carry out 20 days rehabilitation actvivities and imposed a nine month drugs rehabilitation course.
Jones, of Albert Schweitzer Avenue, Netherton, had pleaded guilty to producing cannabis and possessing the drug.
Nardeen Nemat, prosecuting, said that police went to his home, where he had a flat mate, at 8.50 am on October 24 last year on an unrelated matter. Officers went in and saw cannabis on the kitchen worktop.
“They searched the address and found he had a cannabis farm set up in a rear bedroom. They discovered 27 small plants, three medium and seven large.”
Miss Nemat said that the total value of the drugs found in the property had a potential street value of up to £12,900,
“When interviewed he said he had been taking cannabis since he was 14 and spent about £20 a day on cannabis. He started to produce his own about seven weeks ago.
“He said friends had bought him the seeds and he learned from U-tube how to grow them and bought second hand equipment.”
Paul Becker, defending, explained that the defendant’s cannabis use had increased after brain surgery and some time in intensive care. “He is awaiting further surgery and suffers from anxiety and depression and it seems cannabis helps to alleviate his symptoms.
“He wrongly started to grow a crop in this way for financial reasons. He believed he would save money and would not have to see dealers as often as he was. He did not full anticipate the potential yield, being a novice.”
Mr Becker added: “He is aspiring to be drug-free long term and needs to find something else to help his symptoms.”