Sheffield cannabis growers ‘will be jailed’

Kevin Hoggarth, jailed for 12 months for producing cannabis.
Kevin Hoggarth, jailed for 12 months for producing cannabis.
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People who grow cannabis in their homes will not walk free from court, a Sheffield judge has warned.

Recorder David Dixon spoke out as he jailed 46-year-old welder Kevin Hoggarth for 15 months for growing £16,000 worth of the drug.

Susan Evans, prosecuting at Sheffield Crown Court, said that when police went to Hoggarth’s home in Arbourthorne, Sheffield, to carry out enquiries two men fled from the property.

And while officers were searching the house Hoggarth arrived home.

Miss Evans said police found four tents containing 40 cannabis plants - which had an estimated street value of £16,000 - along with another £4,000 worth of cut cannabis.

The court heard Hoggarth had previous convictions for drugs offences, including one in 2002 when he was jailed for 42 months for possessing heroin with intent to supply it.

Miss Evans said he had been recruited by two men to grow the cannabis and he would get a share of the crop which he could take for his own personal use.

“He wasn’t coerced, he was chosing to allow his house to be used to grow the plants,” she added.

Hoggarth, of Brimmersfield Drive, admitted producing cannabis.

Andrew Swaby, defending, said Hoggarth was ‘heavily convicted’ for drugs offences.

But he said he was ‘vulnerable’ and had had a difficult upbringing.

“He’s had mental health problems managed by medication, and also has a drink problem,” said Mr Swaby.

“He made this arrangement with two associates who are not here to face the music.”

Jailing him, Recorder Dixon told Hoggarth: “The message has to go out that you can’t grow cannabis and expect to walk away from court.”