Dramatic raid uncovers £728k eight-room drug farm with two men hiding inside


Two cannabis growers have been jailed after they were caught inside a factory with more than 1,000 plants.

Anh Van Nguyen, aged 42, and 21-year-old Thang Nguyen were found inside a unit at Park House Industrial Estate, Newcastle, on January 16.

There were eight rooms with a total of 748 mature plants, 304 young plants and 273 seedlings. The potential yield was more than 72 kilograms with a street value of between £255,500 and £728,700.

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Now Thang Nguyen has been jailed for two-and-a-half years and Anh Van Nguyen was sentenced to 22 months at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court. The sentences mean both will be deported after serving half their sentences.

Prosecutor Alison Whalley said police attended a unit in Brookhouse Road, Park House Industrial Estate, Newcastle, at 11.15pm on January 16.



Police recovered more than 1,000 cannabis plants
Cannabis plants were discovered at an operation in Newcastle

Miss Whalley said: “It was a professional cannabis factory. The premises were split into eight rooms. There were 748 mature plants, 304 young plants and 273 seedlings. The potential yield was just less than 73 kilograms and the street value was between £255,500 and £728,700.

“Both defendants were arrested.”

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Anh Van Nguyen, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to producing a class B drug.

Thang Nguyen, also of no fixed address, denied the charge but was convicted after a trial.


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Richard McConaghy, mitigating for Anh Van Nguyen, said his client was trying to work off the debt to those who brought him to this country. He said: “He has reached the end of the line. He wants to go home. He came on a venture to this country which plainly did not turn into what he thought it would. He found himself exploited. He has his family in Vietnam and he wants to go back to them.”

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Anis Ali, representing Thang Nguyen, said his client is still young and has no previous convictions. He is a family man with two young children, a sick mother and an estranged wife.

“He has had an unhappy existence but is looking to put his life back on track if he can.”

Recorder Julian Taylor said: “You were both exploited. There is no doubt about that. There were a significant amount of drugs here.

“You both came here illegally. That is a matter for the immigration authorities.”

The defendants, who have been in prison since their arrest, will be deported after they have served half their sentences.

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