Keighley man in jail for two years after £21,000 drugs bust

First published in Keighley by

A 36-year-old man has been jailed for two years and three months after police busted a £21,000 cannabis factory at his home.

Anthony Cooper was caught red-handed with 20 flourishing cannabis plants in the basement at the property in Century Street, Spring Bank, Keighley, on July 25 last year.

Bradford Crown Court heard last Thursday the plants would have together produced almost 2.5 kilogrammes of the Class B drug.

Cooper was so green-fingered that each plant had three times the average yield. His solicitor advocate, Shaida Chaudhury, told the court: “It is Mr Cooper’s bad luck they grew so well.”

Cooper pleaded guilty to production of cannabis and abstracting electricity from the meter to heat his crop. He also pleaded guilty to possession of very small amounts of ecstasy and cannabis resin.

Prosecutor Heather Weir said the street value of the harvested cannabis was £20,914.

Cooper told the police the crop was for his personal use.

Mrs Weir said there were many high-value electrical items at the property, considering Cooper and his partner lived on benefits.

A confiscation hearing will be held at a later date to determine how much Cooper made from his criminality and the value of his assets.

Miss Chaudhury said Cooper turned to smoking cannabis after weaning himself off heroin and cocaine. He is the sole carer for his partner and her two children, and she is about to be confined to a wheelchair by a debilitating illness.

Cooper had spent many years working in the retail trade but was now unable to take up employment because he had suffered a serious leg injury while breaking up a fight.

Judge Roger Thomas QC said Cooper made a calculated decision to start up the cannabis farm.

“It was an established and very well set up operation of its type,” he said.

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