Colchester: Man jailed after 6,000 cannabis plants discovered
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A man who was found to be growing millions of pounds worth of cannabis in an industrial unit in Colchester has been jailed for more than three years.
Rition Mone was growing more than 6,000 cannabis plants at the property in Hythe Station Road.
The cultivation was discovered on April 19, 2021, when officers, who were in the area on unrelated enquiries, became suspicious of the building and believed it may be being used to grow or store cannabis.
When officers attended the unit, a man was seen escaping from the building. As a result, officers acted quickly to apprehend the man and legal entry was then forced into the building.
Once inside, officers discovered a football pitch-sized cannabis grow split into 13 makeshift rooms. In total, there were 6,535 plants present.
Drug experts estimated the harvest to be worth between £2.4 million and £3.6 million. It was clear further harvests were planned which would have been worth a combined total of between £7.2 million and £10.8 million per year, including the initial discovery.
Mone, 26, of Hythe Station Road, Colchester, was arrested and charged with producing a controlled drug.
Jailed - Rition Mone
He appeared at Ipswich Crown Court on February 15 to admit the charge and was sentenced by Her Honour Judge Emma Peters to three years and two months in prison.
Chief Inspector Rob Huddleston, Colchester District Commander, said:
“This is an example of excellent police work which led to the discovery of a very significant cannabis cultivation. “As a result of the excellent work, officers were very quickly able to apprehend Mone, charge him and put him before the court. “The trade in illegal drugs, no matter what class they are in, is inextricably linked to violence and the proceeds from drugs funds more criminal activity which leads to fear and misery for individuals and communities. “Stopping the people behind the growth and sale of cannabis is vital in tackling violent crime and helps keep our community safe.”