Brothers jailed over £500,000 cannabis operation on remote North Wales farms

Reporter:

Staff reporter (Leader Live)

Two brothers who admitted involvement in major cannabis production in remote North Wales locations have been jailed.

Mold Crown Court heard how 567 plants were found at a rented farm - Cysolog Farm, Maerdy near Corwen – in May of last year.

The estimated value of the potential yield on the street was said to be more than £476,000.

Then in January of this year a search warrant was executed at another rented farm - Bonc Farm, Nantyr, near Llangollen – where 119 plants were found with a potential yield valued at up to £99,000.

Sam Clark, 28, of Waterfield Road in Ellesmere Port, was jailed for five years and four months after he admitted production at both farm.

His brother, Lewis Dean Clark, 31, of Queen’s Avenue in Sandycroft, admitted production at the Llangollen farm only – on the basis that he was recruited to look after the plants when his brother was “lying low” from the police. He was jailed for 40 months.

Judge Keith Thomas ordered that £13,200 seized by police during the investigation should be used by police in the fight against crime.

The judge said that Sam Clark had been involved in both productions – one with another brother who had previously been dealt with, and the second with his brother Lewis Clark.

Sam Clark had been on bail for the first when he was involved in the second.

“I am satisfied that you believed the police were going to close in on you. No doubt you were right,” the judge told him.

He left his brother Lewis in charge and text messages between them over what should be done. 

The judge said that Sam Clark was the leader and while he had previous convictions, there was nothing involving cannabis.

Lewis Clark had pleaded on the basis that he looked after his brother’s enterprise when he felt it necessary to abandon it.

He ran it for a short period but his position was aggravated by two previous convictions for cannabis production and he was on licence at the time.

Prosecuting  barrister Matthew Curtis told how police forced entry into the farm at Maerdy in May last year looking for Sam Clark. They found a large cannabis grown and another brother Andrew Clark who was there was arrested.

Sam Clark was later arrested in a car at Birkenhead when £13,500 in cash was seized.

The 567 plants were found in five separate rooms each with lighting, watering and ventilation systems. Sam Clark gave a no comment interview and was bailed.

Lewis Clark was arrested when police executed a warrant at the Llangollen farm in January where a second grow had been set up.

He said he had nowhere else to live, was aware of the grow but said it was not his. He was recalled to prison because he was on licence.

Simon Mintz for Lewis Clark said that he was a groundsman who had the sense to plead guilty.

Gareth Roberts for Sam Clark said that when he found himself out of work he had been persuaded to get involved in a cannabis grow.

It was closed down by the police and those who had lost money persuaded him to help them recoup their losses and he foolishly agreed.

See full story in the Free Press

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