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Liverpool father-of-12 jailed for his involvement in Denbighshire farmhouse that had been converted into a cannabis factory - Denbighshire Free Press

Posted on 11 January, 2019 by Mack C. Dunn
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Liverpool father-of-12 jailed for his involvement in Denbighshire farmhouse that had been converted into a cannabis factory - Denbighshire Free Press

Police found a major cannabis growing operation in a farmhouse in the Denbighshire countryside.

A Liverpool man Darren Kamara, aged 51, a father of 12, admitted a cultivation charge on the basis that he cared for the plants for others for a couple of days only.

Mold Crown Court heard how police executed a search warrant at Bwlch y Gynog at Saron near Denbigh and found that the farmhouse had been converted into a cannabis factory complete with hydroponic growing equipment.

A total of 148 cannabis plants, some two feet high, were found in the living room, the down-stairs back room and the two upstairs bedroom.

An expert estimated that the value of the potential yield to be anywhere between £41,000 to £124,000.

The class B drug was being grown on a commercial basis for considerable financial gain, said prosecutor Sarah Badrawy.

The defendant was due to go on trial on a production charge but Miss Badrawy said intelligence had been received which undermined the prosecution case.

It had been decided to accept his basis of plea that he had been caring for the plants for others for a couple of days only.

She said that the owner of the property had refused to help police over who was renting the property and there was intelligence about other people who had been using it.

The defendant's finger prints had been found at the property together with his DNA on a cigarette butt.

But while the defendant could be connected to the property the prosecution could not say what his role was.

The electricity meter had been tampered with and power abstracted illegally.

Kamara, of Foxhill Close in Liverpool, received a 26 month prison sentence - 18 months for the drugs and the remainder for being in breach of two suspended prison sentences.

Judge Niclas Parry said that drugs clearly played an important part in his life.

It was his second conviction for cannabis production.

"This time you were playing an important part in what can only be described as a very large scale production operation," he said.

There was a remarkably wide span in the value of the drugs that could be produced but it could go as high as £124,000.

The potential financial benefit was extremely significant.

He said the case was aggravated by the fact that electricity was being abstracted illegally, he was acting with others, and he had an appalling criminal record with previous convictions for 80 offences including serious violence and a robbery.

The defendant had committed the current offence while subject to two suspended prison sentences.

Judge Parry said Kamara would still receive credit for his late guilty plea and he said he also took into account health difficulties.

Defending barrister Katy Appleton said that the defendant in his basis of plea had no involvement in setting up the cannabis production at the farmhouse.

He was asked by a friend to look after the farmhouse, he saw the scale of the operation, tended to the plants for a couple of days but his father, who had since died, was taken ill and the defendant returned to Liverpool to care for him the morning before the police raid in May last year. That was his only involvement.

Kamara was a father of 12 who had eight grandchildren who himself had significant health problems.

He was awaiting a heart by-pass operation and the amputation of his right foot.

She asked that the case be adjourned for a pre-sentence report so that a further suspended sentence could be considered.

But the judge said he would not be assisted by such a report and that he would proceed to sentence immediately.

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