GREEN-fingered Nathan Jones was far more successful at growing cannabis than he imagined.
He planted a dozen and expected only half of them to survive, but they all flourished and he sold some of the surplus to friends.
Yesterday at Mold Crown Court, Jones, 22, of Mold Road, Wrexham, was jailed for 12 months after he admitted producing cannabis with intent to supply, and possessing the class B drug.
The butcher’s son had since given up using cannabis and had been able to change his life-style, his barrister Oliver King explained. But Judge Rhys Rowlands said at the time Jones was said to be spending up to £60 a day on cannabis.
Sentencing Jones, the judge told him: “While awaiting sentence you have conceived a chid but that is something that cannot affect the sentence one jot.”
The judge made an agreed order under The Proceeds of Crime Act that the defendant’s benefit from drugs was £4,950 and the amount to be forfeited was £2,590 – the cash seized by the police on his arrest.
The court heard in January 2012 the police executed a search warrant at the defendant’s father’s home in Wrexham and found 690 grammes of cannabis together with a cannabis grinder, scales and cash.
A container in the farm yard was searched and 12 cannabis plants were found in a sophisticated growing system.
Incriminating text messages were discovered on his mobile phone, said Emmalyne Downing, prosecuting.
Judge Rowlands said it was an extremely serious matter. “Anybody who produces drugs and is prepared to supply drugs runs the risk of going to prison, usually for a significant period.
“I don’t accept that you were naive.
“It was the risk you were prepared to take and you will now have to face the consequences,” the judge said.
Mr King said the basis of plea was important. Jones had intended to grow his own cannabis and the fact there were only a dozen plants supported that.
He expected half to die, but they all grew, he had a surplus, and he agreed to supply some of that surplus to friends who already used cannabis. Jones had sold that cannabis and that would have been used to buy more for himself.
Jones had worked at his father’s butcher’s shop, he had the potential of an engineering job out of the area, and there was another side to him. He would cut the lawn and do odd jobs for his grandmother and other elderly people. He had not been in any further trouble over a 12 month period.