Cannabis grower jailed for two years after plants worth £268,000 were found at house in Guiseley
A man has been jailed after police found more than a quarter of a million pounds worth of cannabis plants at a house in Leeds.
Malbor Luzi was at the property in Guiseley when West Yorkshire Police officers executed a search warrant on Greenshaw Terrace, Guiseley, on October 20 this year.
Leeds Crown Court heard officers found 489 plants growing in different rooms.
The plants were in different stages of growth indicating that it was an ongoing operation.
Jessica Heggie, prosecuting, said the plants were capable of producing cannabis with a street value of £268,950.
The estimated wholesale value of the class B drug was £135,000.
The house was equipped with sophisticated heating, lighting and growing equipment.
Air fresheners had been placed in the house to prevent the smell of cannabis escaping through the letterbox.
Luzi, an Albanian national, was in possession of a mobile phone, cash, a bank card and an identification card when arrested.
The 33-year-old, of no fixed address, was interviewed and claimed he had been threatened by others who ordered him to look after the plants.
Luzi also said he had only been responsible for watering the plants.
He pleaded guilty to producing cannabis and was jailed for two years.
Sentencing, Recorder Ben Nolan QC said: "Although you allege a degree of intimidation and coercion, I am satisfied that you could leave the premises if you wished.
"You were there to make money as you had indicated and that was the purpose of you being in England in the first place.
"You had only been here for a matter of weeks.
"You were brought here specifically for this job of cannabis farming."
"You contend that you were there simply to water the crops, but this was a much more sophisticated growth than mere watering.
"Because of the prevalence of this offending, it tends to suggest that people without convictions in the UK are brought into the UK specifically for this purpose.
"There must be a degree of deterrent on those who are growing cannabis on this scale."