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Nottingham Post
Nottingham Post
Rebecca Sherdley

Weapons, cash and cannabis found in residential street in Bilborough

A police raid turned up weapons, designer clothes and cannabis - worth up to £48,000 on the streets. A warrant was executed in Tremayne Road, Bilborough, just after 8am on August 9 last year, Nottingham Crown Court heard.

Two men - Albanian chef Klajdi Egra and friend Aurel Shima - were charged with producing cannabis, with Egra admitting an additional charge of possessing cannabis with intent to supply.

Both men, of Tremayne Road, were jailed on Wednesday (February 1) after the court heard how the search of the semi-detached four-bedroom home, spread over three floors, saw police recover dried cannabis and 57 infant plants.

Read more: Radford man admits being involved in the supply of cannabis for months

Egra, 26, who was here legally with temporary leave to remain, had designer clothes in his room, a lock knife, and keys, which were underneath a mattress, to cars on the drive. Officer also seized a butterfly knife, and an iPhone down the back of the bed, and a receipt for hydroponic equipment.

Egra's fingerprint was on a vacuum-sealed bag of cannabis. On his phone were videos sent and received of cannabis plants via WhatsApp, and messages, in Albanian, which referred to "grass" - another name for cannabis.

Three vacuum-sealed bags of cannabis were discovered in the vehicles on the drive. Rebecca Coleman, mitigating for Shima, said her client arrived in this country 20 days before his arrest. "He came here illegally and told police he travelled by boat," said Miss Coleman.

Shima, 25, stayed in an "immigration hotel" in Luton, then went to live with his cousin. He travelled from London to Nottingham to seek advice about whether he could get an immigration car, and was at the Bilborough address for four days with his old school pal Egra.

Shima was promised cash to look after the plants by an individual who was not present when police arrived. Judge William Harbage, King's Counsel, said the house was being used for the production of cannabis on a "commercial scale".

"There were two cars on the drive, there was food in the fridge, people at that house were looking after those plants and involved in the grow. There were 57 young plants in a propagator.

"They were capable of producing cannabis with a street value up to £48,000. There was another large bag of cannabis in the house, bin bags of waste cuttings - indicating this was not the first grow going on.

"Egra, your fingerprint was on one of those bags. Six telephones were recovered - Egra's phone contained incriminating messages about a previous grow. There was £800 cash, a lock knife, butterfly knife, and a receipt for £3,000 worth of growing equipment in the house."

Egra, the judge said, played a significant role, with an operational function - although he was directed by people higher up the chain - and there was an expectation of significant financial gain and he was fully aware of the scale of the operation. He was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison, including credit for his plea of guilty.

Shima also received credit for his guilty plea and his sentence was set at 12 months, with the judge telling him he played a lesser role and limited function as "a gardener". He did, however, have the expectation of financial reward and it was quite clear he was aware of the scale of the operation given what was found in the house.

The judge ordered forfeiture and destruction of the drugs, knifes, phones, designer clothing and cash.

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