Cannabis grower jailed

A MAN who was behind an operation to grow cannabis with a potential street value of �48,000 at three houses in Beccles and Lowestoft has been jailed for two years.

Police officers who executed a drug-search warrant at a house in Ballygate, Beccles, in July discovered 62 cannabis plants in the garden and in a bedroom and a further 82 plants were found at houses in Wenhaston Way and Herons Close, Lowestoft, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Before the court on Monday were Brian Reynolds, 56, and Christine Smedley, 65, of Heron’s Close, Lowestoft, and Grizelda Bayliss, 60, of Wenhaston Way, Lowestoft.

All three admitted being involved in the production of cannabis and Reynolds also admitted supplying cannabis.

Reynolds, who was described by Recorder Andrew Hurst as being the organiser of the operation, was jailed for two years.

Sentencing Bayliss and Smedley to six-month jail terms suspended for 12 months and ordering them to each do 40 hours unpaid work in the community, Mr Hurst said it was a tragedy for them to end up before the court.

Naomi Turner, prosecuting, said the property in Beccles belonged to Bayliss’s brother and she was looking after the house while he was in America. As well as the cannabis plants found at Herons Close and Wenhaston Way, hydroponic growing equipment was found at a house in Holt Road, Caister-on-Sea, where Reynolds had lived.

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John Farmer, for Reynolds, said his client became involved in growing cannabis after getting into debt. He had admitted growing some earlier cannabis crops and making about �6,000 by selling the drug to a single person.

Mr Farmer said Smedley had no previous convictions and was of exemplary character. She had agreed to let Reynolds use part of her home to grow cannabis while she was at a vulnerable stage in her life.

Helen Fleck, for Bayliss, said her client, who worked as a carer, was ashamed and embarrassed and had become involved in the offence because of financial pressures.