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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Jonathan Humphries

Man hurled kilos of cannabis into neighbour's garden after knock at door

A man who allowed his home to be used as a stash-house for drug dealers was spotted hurling kilos of cannabis worth up to £45,000 out of a window into his neighbour's garden.

Hisham Albidani, 36, desperately tried to ditch the 3kg of cannabis resin and 700g of cannabis bush after police officers carrying out a drugs warrant tried to gain entry to his flat on Lesseps Road, Toxteth, on October 23 last year.

Albidani, who later admitted he had agreed to store the drugs and quantities of cash to repay a £6,000 cannabis debt, appeared at Liverpool Crown Court today for sentence after pleading guilty to possession of cannabis with intent to supply.

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Derek Jones, prosecuting, told the court: "Officers went around the back of the property while others knocked on the front. Those officers saw somebody throwing a half-full bin bag out of a bedroom window into next door's garden.

"The defendant then went downstairs and opened the door for the officers to enter. Police searched the neighbouring garden and found the black bin bag but also a red sports bag."

Mr Jones said inside the bag were blocks of cannabis resin divided into six half kilos, and female cannabis flowering heads inside the bin bag. The bag also contained a set of scales containing traces of cannabis, and snap bags. The court heard the drugs were estimated to be worth up to £13,500 if sold wholesale, or up to £45,000 if divided into street deals.

Mr Jones said phones were seized, but no messages or calls suggestive of drug dealing were uncovered on the devices, and no tick-lists were recovered from the flat to support any suggestion Albidani was supplying drugs directly to users.

Albidani was arrested and answered no comment in his police interviews, but pleaded guilty when the case came before city magistrates in March. The court heard he had previous convictions for dangerous driving in 2007 and drug driving in 2017, but had no convictions for drugs supply.

Jo Maxwell, defending, told the court her client had been a "heavy" cannabis user at the time of the offences and had run up a large drugs debt. However she said he had remained drug free since the day of his arrest and had now secured a job and was attending a course at Liverpool City College.

She said: "While he still owes a substantial debt, he says he has had no trouble so far and he does not expect any trouble. He tells me if it was to come to his door he would move out of the area."

Ms Maxwell said Albidani was willing to work with Probation and had said he would "wear a tag on both legs and both arms" if it kept him out of prison.

Judge Gary Woodhall, sentencing, said Albidani was "very close" to going straight to prison, but due to his guilty pleas, his lack of relevant previous convictions and his efforts to turn his life around while on bail meant he saw a "realistic prospect of rehabilitation".

He said: "You were storing valuable amounts of drugs and large quantities of cash. You were carrying out that function in the expectation, in your circumstances, of significant financial reward or other advantage, including reducing a very significant debt."

Albidani was handed a 10 month prison sentence, suspended for 15 months, and ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work. He was also ordered to complete 30 Rehabilitation Activity Days with the Probation Service.


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