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Police seize 195 cannabis plants from 'sophisticated' West End factory in the nick of time



Police seize 195 cannabis plants from 'sophisticated' West End factory in the nick of time


More than half of the crop had been harvested




Cannabis plants worth over £180,000 were seized in Leicester's West End shortly before the drugs hit the streets.

Officers arrested two illegal immigrants - who were working as gardeners at the site - during a police raid at the converted premises in Celt Street on Friday July 12.

Elizabeth Dodds, prosecuting told Leicester Crown Court that 195 cannabis plants were found, of which 103 had already been harvested and were drying out, prior to being taken away.

She said 92 other plants were yet to be cropped at the "sophisticated set up," equipped with time-controlled ventilation, lighting and water pumps.

The electricity meter had been by-passed.



Miss Dodds said the potential street value of the all the illegal plants was estimated at about £186,000.

Yiber Dervishi, 29, and Erblin Duraku, 26, both admitted cannabis production, in their capacity as gardeners.

What the judge said
Judge Nicholas Dean QC said: "No doubt it's true you both came here searching for a better life intending to send money back to your families in Albania.

"It is, of course, a sadness that people who choose, as you did, to enter the country unlawfully can then find themselves being exploited by those who may have assisted them in getting to this country.

"Whilst you were exploited, you weren't trafficked and you ended up acting as gardeners in a cannabis factory, which offers you some mitigation but isn't a defence.


"You did it knowing it was unlawful and were assisting in a relatively large scale commercial cannabis production operation.

"You're both in your 20's and have no convictions recorded against you.

"On your release you may be on licence, or it may be you're deported but that's a matter for the Home Office and not the court."

Mitigation for the gardeners
Tim Starkey, mitigating for Duraku, said: "He's described a difficult financial situation for his family in Albania.

"He was supporting his parents and disabled brother.

"His father had undergone a spinal operation.


"He came to the UK to seek a better life so he'd be able to send money back home."

Amar Mehta, for Dervishi, said: "It's a similar story, all too familiar to this court.

"His involvement was a lesser role and the Crown accepts that.

"He would voluntarily submit to deportation at the end of the sentence."

The sentence
Dervishi and Duraku, both of no fixed address, were each jailed for nine months.






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More nice locals ruining it for us small growers

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At least they will get all the money back from the big guys back home...oh wait, it's gone and they cant touch them.


Edit: 200k per crop, how many times per year? How long were they living there? An all too familiar tale to the courts apparently. How much money is being siphoned out of the country to Vietnam and Albania? 

Edited by ukscroger

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