A YOUNG man who grew cannabis in a tent at a flat has escaped an immediate prison sentence.

Dominic James Edwards, 20, of Hafan Deg, Holywell, admitted producing 20 cannabis plants in a hydroponics growing system in a flat at The Feathers Inn in Whitford Street, Holywell, a year ago.

The prosecution claimed the potential yield of the cannabis, if sold on the street, was in the region of £5,600.

Edwards admitted production and being concerned in the supply of cannabis between January and June of last year and received a 52-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.

He must also carry out 300 hours’ unpaid work and be tagged to ensure he remains indoors at night for the next three months between 7pm and 5am.

Judge Niclas Parry, who ordered the destruction of the plants, also ordered him to pay £1,200 costs.

Edwards, the judge said, had been responsible for creating harmful drugs.

“This kind of offence is a deliberate decision to disregard the law and you were making more harmful drugs available,” he said. It was quite a sophisticated operation and the potential for profit was obvious.

However, Edwards was only 20. He did not have any previous convictions for supplying drugs and nearly 12 months had passed since his arrest during which time he had been able to transform his life.

“Take your chance,” the judge urged him.

Myles Wilson, defending, said Edwards was part of a group which divided cannabis between them.

He grew the cannabis primarily for himself because he was a heavy user but he would have sold what was left over to friends to cover his costs.

Since his arrest Edwards had turned his life around, said Mr Wilson.

He had returned home and his life was stable. He was proud of his job and he had completely changed his attitude to life.