Earls Barton cannabis grower gets jail term

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A 51-year-old man has been sentenced to eight months in prison after growing cannabis in his own home.

When passing the sentence for Derek Bevan, of Broad Street, Earls Barton, Judge Richard Bray said that it would send out the wrong message if the defendant was spared jail, despite it being a low-scale operation.

Northampton Crown Court heard that police carried out a search on the property on August 5, finding 40 plants as well as growing apparatus.

Judge Bray said: “Although this is a small scale operation you took a gamble and lost.

“Passing a suspended sentence will give the green light to cottage industries in the county who grow cannabis. It will send out the message that if you are caught by the police, you get one free hit. That is a nonsense and you must pay the penalty.”

The court heard that Bevan turned to using the drug after being made redundant from his job in May 2011 and recovering from a heart attack.

He took to growing the drug after finding it hard to pay for it.

James McClernon, mitigating, said that only six of the plants were fertile, with the majority going to waste.