Young father jailed after police discover mobile cannabis farm in back of van

A YOUNG father has been sentenced to 40 months in jail after police discovered he was growing a mobile cannabis farm from his camper van.

Police found the drug growing in the back of the van belonging to Robert Migel-Lopez on March 5 this year.

The van also contained packages of NRG2, a Class B drug, with a street value of more than £84,000, Gloucester Crown Court heard.

Migel-Lopez, 36, of Chipping Street, tetbury admitted two charges of possession of NRG2, a Class B drug, with intent to supply and a charge of producing cannabis.

He had first come to the attention of the police when a Highways Agency patrol came found the defendant sitting in his Ford Focus car on the hard shoulder of the M56 motorway in Cheshire on March 10, 2011.

Police later found a carrier bag in the car containing a kilogram of Class B drug NRG2 with a street value of £20,040. Migel-Lopez told officers he was a courier taking Ôlegal highsÕ from Bolton to Gloucester.

On March 5 this year, police went to the car park at the George Inn in Cambridge near Dursley where they found a camper van and a Vauxhall combo van with Migel-Lopez and his ex-girlfriend Suzanne Seer, aged 21, of Tilsdown Close, Dursley in the front.

As they approached the officers watched as the defendant tried to dispose of a substance, that was later confirmed as NRG2. He was arrested and a subsequent search of the van uncovered an estimated £84,259 of the substance.

They also discovered that the rear of the camper van was being used to grow 20 cannabis plants which would have yielded drugs to the value of £1,760. There were also lights, a ventilation system and scales.

Evidence of being involved in supplying the drugs was discovered on Seer's phone who pleaded guilty to being concerned in the sale of cannabis and NRG2 Claire Malvern-White, for Migel-Lopez, said he had been a courier for a company that sold legal highs on the internet. The drugs found in his possession were left over from that. He admitted small scale supply on a social basis to people known to him, she added.

Jason Coulter, representing Seer, said she was of previous good character who, to some extent, had been led astray by her co-defendant.

Migel-Lopez was sentenced to 24 months in prison for the first NRG2 charge, 60 months for the second and 48 months for the cannabis production charge, all to run concurrently. The total to be served was reduced to 40months in recognition of his early plea and because he has already spent 106 days in custody.

Seer was sentenced to eight months in prison, suspended for two years, and ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.

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