A Southampton landlord has been convicted after he admitted to knowing his leased-out flat was being used as a cannabis production factory.
Justin Griffiths, 31, of Atherley Road, admitted to allowing the premises to be used for production of the illegal substance, but was spared an immediate prison sentence.
The property in question was a ground-floor property in Gordon Avenue. Police discovered that two rooms in the property had been given over to the operation, which had a potential yield of between £8,000 and £10,000 per year.
Justin Hugheston-Roberts, mitigating at city crown court, said that Griffiths intended to move into the property himself but rented it out after his circumstances changed. Hugheston-Roberts said:
“He turned his back on what he suspected was going on because he was getting £550 per month in rent.”
He also suggested that Griffiths wasn’t involved in the operation and wasn’t getting a cut from the production. Griffiths was given a 16-month suspended sentence coupled with a 200-hour community work order.
As he had 18 previous convictions for 59 offences, including four for possession of cannabis, he was also told to pay £1,600 in terms of a fine, costs and a surcharge.