Drugs cache cancer patient sent to prison

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A CANCER patient who found himself homeless and in debt after he started drinking following his diagnosis has been jailed for growing cannabis.

Hard-up Carl Walker, aged 32, was locked up for nine months by a judge at Sheffield Crown Court after he admitted producing cannabis in exchange for accommodation.

Neil Coxon, prosecuting, told the court when police raided Walker’s flat on York Street, Cudworth, Barnsley, on October 23, they found 50 cannabis plants with a £20,000 yield growing in two bedrooms.

He said: “They also found the usual paraphernalia used in the production of cannabis – ducting, timers, windows which excluded natural light and high intensity lighting units.”

Walker was arrested and told police he set up the equipment himself.

He later changed his story and told officers he was growing the Class B drug on behalf of someone else, but wouldn’t give their name.

Mr Coxon said: “His hope was he would obtain financial benefit from growing the cannabis.”

James Baird, defending Walker, said he was receiving treatment for testicular cancer.

He said his marriage had broken down after he started drinking too much.

Mr Baird told the court: “He was living with friends and sleeping on their sofa. He was offered accommodation and in return for that he carried out the role which he admitted to the police. He knew what he was doing was wrong but he felt in a vulnerable position and there was an element of coercion.”