Axminster man pleads guilty to cannabis production

PUBLISHED: 18:18 28 August 2009 | UPDATED: 00:04 16 June 2010

AN AXMINSTER man admitted to growing 74 cannabis plants at his home.

AN AXMINSTER man admitted to growing 74 cannabis plants at his home.

Police claimed Steven Wayne Kelly's production could have a commercial value of as much as £11,480.

Devon Central Magistrates' Court heard Kelly, 32, of Bonners Causeway, had used two rooms for production.

Kelly pleaded guilty to the charge of producing a quantity of cannabis, but said it had been for personal use.

The court heard a police officer had visited Kelly's house on an unrelated matter and noticed a strong smell of cannabis. Kelly was arrested and a thorough search carried out.

They found one room with tents for cannabis, and a small bedroom fully converted, lined with silver foil, covered windows and a comprehensive fan and lighting system.

Prosecution argued that if all the plants were female and grew to full maturity, they would yield 4.1kilos. At £2.80 per gram, it was calculated that over £11,000 could be made.

In mitigation, James Rickard said it was unlikely that all the plants would be female or that production would be that high.

He said: "There is no suggestion that he [Kelly] was living beyond his means. It was for his own personal use."

He added Kelly had no previous convictions, and that although he had a good set up for plant growing, he argued it was not a sophisticated one.

He said: "It is utterly misleading to say it would yield £11,000 because it won't."

The case has been sent to Crown Court for sentencing next month. Kelly was granted unconditional bail.


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