Drug gardeners tending £70,000 cannabis farm in Sutton want to be deported after prison

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Two drug gardeners who were nabbed while tending a £70,000 cannabis farm in Sutton have asked to be deported once they have served their prison sentences, a court has heard.

Neighbours on Mason Street raised their concerns with police and Aldi Sefullaj, 19, and Ylli Zdrava, aged 44, were arrested when they eventually answered the door, on April 8.

An illegal dog was seized and a sophisticated cannabis grow, with 143 plants, was discovered in three bedrooms of the property.

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Abigail Hill, prosecuting, said the electricity had been bypassed, the windows were blacked out, and officers found carbon filters, light reflectors and dehumidifiers.

Nottingham Crown Court.Nottingham Crown Court.
Nottingham Crown Court.

Equipment for a further set-up was found in the cellar and experts estimated the grow could have fetched between £23,240 and £69,720 depending on the yield.

Laura Pitman, mitigating, said Zdrava was offered £1,000 for three months' work, as well as food and shelter, and had been there for two months.

She said he has been in the UK for about two years after entering illegally and became involved after losing the work he had.

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He was hoping to get a 12-month sentence so he could be automatically deported upon serving it, Ms Pitman said, but cannabis production isn't one of the offences which trigger that.

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He wants to be reunited with his wife, daughter and elderly parents, she added.

Chris Brewin said Sefullaj spent eight months in the UK working in Northampton and was installed at the grow a day before the raid.

"He has never been in trouble before," he said. “He was a student before he came to the UK. He wishes to be reunited with his family as soon as possible.

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"it is likely he will be deported if it is conceded his deportation is conducive to the public good."

On Tuesday, Recorder Anne Marie Trussler said Zdrava had been open with the police from the outset and handed him 28 weeks in prison.

Sefullaj was given credit for the guilty plea he entered and a 27-week sentence was imposed. They have already served 13 weeks in prison so they will be released shortly.

Nottinghamshire police produced a video to warn landlords about the fire risks of cannabis grows after the raid.