Gas leak in Mirfield home led to £7k drugs bust

Police found almost �7,000 worth of cannabis at Anthony Curley's house in Stocks Bank Road, Mirfield, on April 20, 2011.

Police found almost �7,000 worth of cannabis at Anthony Curley's house in Stocks Bank Road, Mirfield, on April 20, 2011.

A ‘GREEDY’ taxi driver, who had almost £7,000 worth of cannabis in his home when police burst in to investigate a gas leak has been jailed.

Officers also found £7,000 in Anthony Curley’s freezer which he had earned as a taxi driver but not paid tax on.

And the 43-year-old had £12,000 concealed in a bank account, Leeds Crown Court heard on Tuesday.

Samuel Andrews, prosecuting, said police went to investigate a gas leak at Curley’s home in Stocks Bank Road, Battyeford, on April 20 last year.

Curley was not home so officers forced their way in. They found 808.36g of cannabis and cannabis equipment being run off abstracted electricity.

There were 20 cannabis plants growing in a bedroom and around £60 worth of cannabis was found on a mantelpiece.

Most of the drugs were split up into 3.5g bags and in total officers found cannabis with a street value of £6,928.

Police also found £7,000 Curley had earned as a taxi driver in the freezer compartment of his fridge and £12,000 in a Yorkshire Bank account which he had concealed to avoid paying tax on it.

Curley was arrested that day and in September he admitted producing cannabis and abstracting electricity.

When he was due to stand trial on six further charges in November, Curley admitted possessing cannabis with intent, possessing criminal property and concealing criminal property.

His pleas were accepted on the basis that the drugs were primarily for his own use and that he would only supply some of it to his friends for no financial gain.

In court on Tuesday, Judge Geoffrey Marson QC found Curley not guilty of dishonestly failing to disclose information to make a gain and two counts of concealing criminal property.

Nigel Shepherd, mitigating, asked the judge to give Curley a community order but he was sentenced to 13 months in prison.

Judge Marson QC said: “The growing of cannabis plants involved some sophistication from the photographs I have seen. It was a planned and determined breach of the law.

“As far as you cheating the Revenue is concerned... this was a determined attempt to cheat the Revenue out of a significant amount of money that was borne out of greed. There is no other explanation for it.”




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