A Nottingham father is facing prosecution for trying to keep his son out of the illegal black market cannabis trade.

  • Michael Reed told police that he was growing cannabis to keep his son away from dealers
  • Police estimate the value of his crop being between £12,320 – £36,790
  • Reed could face up to 14 years in prison for intent to supply a Class B substance
  • The UK currently spends £50m a year on policing cannabis

A Nottingham father is facing prosecution for trying to keep his son out of the illegal black market cannabis trade.

Michael Reed was found with 24 plants and a further 18 seedlings, with police estimating the value of the crop being anywhere between £12k – £36K, although there is some dispute over this figure, with some believing police are exaggerating the value of the crop.

Policing cannabis costs taxpayers up to £50m a year. The very same Government says it cannot afford to feed starving children.

The father of one pleaded guilty to producing a controlled drug earlier this year, on January 11. Magistrates have released Reed on unconditional bail until August 16, when they will decide on the motive behind the crop. Reed maintains that he was growing the medicinal herb to prevent himself and his son from contributing to the black market trade, which boosts the power of organized crime gangs.

However, a police “expert’ has claimed that the harvest’s size belies this argument, as the amount of cannabis grown was “beyond one person’s smoking capabilities” and magistrates must rule on the case.

The incident occurred back in January earlier this year when Nottingham police were called to Reed’s residence.

Lee Shepherd, prosecuting, said that when police visited Reed, they noticed a “strong smell of cannabis and officers were invited to have a look around”.

The prosecuting officer believes that the argument put forward by Mr. Shepherd does not add up: “The scale and sophistication of the grow suggest it is a commercial grow. The drugs expert says it is beyond one person’s smoking capabilities.”

Stephen Burdon, mitigating, said Reed, 57, had mainly produced it for his son with some for himself.

“This was not on a commercial basis – he wanted to protect his son.

“The police didn’t ask questions about the usage of cannabis by the son and Mr. Reed. His son is a cannabis user. He did not want his son going to dealers,” said Mr. Burdon.

Mr. Burdon is to appoint an independent drugs expert to examine the police report. The solicitor said it was “double-edged” to argue that Reed intended to provide the drug for his son because that was a form of supply.

Reed’s mobile phone and laptop were seized by police officers who were searching for evidence “to suggest that he had the intention of onward supply”.

In 2015, there were 87,247 police caseloads relating to the cannabis, with the average cost to the taxpayer per case estimated at £2,256.  The Liberal Democrats estimate that a total of £31m was spent on 1,044,180 police hours policing cannabis. Does this sound like a reasonable way to spend taxpayer money?

Policing cannabis costs taxpayers up to £50m a year, with 1,363 inmates currently in prison in England and Wales for cannabis-related offenses. You are being forced to house and feed these people because our Government refuses to accept they are wrong on cannabis laws.

The very same Government says it cannot afford to feed starving children. What is happening to the UK?

Do you think this is an effective use of police time and resources, or do you think the country should move forward and end the war on cannabis users?