Two men sentenced for drug factory

Latest crime and court news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

Latest crime and court news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

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Two men who grew cannabis at a house in Sudbury have been handed suspended prison sentences.

Steven Clark, 39, and Matthew Drury, 35, had pleaded not guilty to a charge of producing cannabis but were found guilty by a jury at Ipswich Crown Court in December.

During their trial, the jury heard that when police searched a property in Hawkins Road, Sudbury, on February 16 last year, they discovered cannabis plants being cultivated in two bedrooms.

Prosecutor Catherine Bradshaw said canvas tents had been set up along with heating, lighting and hydroponic watering equipment.

The prosecution said that the cannabis had been grown between November 2013 and the day of the police raid.

Miss Bradshaw said a forensic examination of the contents of the house revealed Clark’s fingerprints on a fan and a protective suit, while Drury’s prints were found on a light and a piece of adhesive tape.

Giving evidence during the trial, Clark claimed that he had allowed an unnamed man to use the house for storage in return for carrying out work for him.

Both Clark, of Melford Way, Sudbury, and Drury, of East Street, Sudbury, denied having any knowledge that cannabis was being grown and said the first they knew was when they arrived at the house to deliver a washing machine.

On Wednesday, Clark and Drury returned to Ipswich Crown Court to be sentenced and were each given 12 months imprisonment, suspended for two years, ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid community work and pay £1,200 in prosecution costs.

Sentencing both men, Judge John Holt warned them that any further offending during the next two years could result in the suspended prison sentences being immediately activated.