Ipswich/Stradishall: Man jailed over cannabis haul worth an estimated �100,000

POLICE who arrested a motorist after a car chase found cannabis with a potential street value of nearly �100,000 when they searched farm buildings belonging to him, a court has heard.

Officers pursued Hanif Shakeri into a car park on a business centre after he failed to stop when they activated the blue flashing light on their vehicle, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

During the chase two police cars were damaged and when officers searched Shakeri’s car they discovered a small amount of cannabis and �2,000 cash in a glove compartment, said Karl Voltz, prosecuting.

Officers who went to Home Farm, Edmunds Hill, Stradishall discovered cannabis in a caravan as well as seven mobile phones, four sets of scales and a number of clear plastic bags.

A search of barns at the premises resulted in the discovery of �2,300 cash and further cannabis totalling 10kg with a maximum potential street value of just under �100,000.

Shakeri, 24, admitted possessing cannabis with intent to supply, careless driving and possessing criminal property.

Sentencing him to a 12 month jail term and a �600 fine for careless driving Judge Peter Thompson said that as he had already spend 329 days in custody he would be released immediately.

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He said Shakeri claimed he had been put under pressure to look after the drugs by a man called “Paddy” and had been concerned that he and his family would be harmed if he didn’t do as he was told. “I accept you were in a state of some pressure and felt you had no option to succumb to pressure by Paddy,” said the judge.

Richard Kelly, for Shakeri, said his client had been holding the drugs for a man called “Paddy” who had beaten him up. He accepted the pressure exerted on Shakeri didn’t amount to a legal defence of duress.

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