A man was caught growing cannabis plants in his home – after the block of flats caught fire.
Emergency crews were sent to the scene on Mastrick Road in Aberdeen when a blaze started in a flat and spread to the roof of the block.
The building was evacuated and when police officers went in to make sure there were no more people inside, they stumbled upon Grant Simpson’s cannabis farm.
Fiscal depute Lynzi Souter told Aberdeen Sheriff Court: “Police were asked to attend at the block of flats containing the locus following reports of a fire which spread from the veranda to the roof of the building.
“Officers attended along with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. The occupants were evacuated.
“When the building was checked to ensure no further persons remained, officers saw there was a number of cannabis plants being cultivated within a bedroom.
“The accused was cautioned and arrested. The accused was then interviewed whereby he admitted to owning cannabis plants for personal use.
“There were eight cannabis plants found along with a growing tent and various growing equipment.
“Each plant had a potential value of between £200 and £800, so a combined £1,600 to £6,000.”
She added the plants had been “beginning to produce buds”.
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Simpson, now of Loirston Avenue in Aberdeen, pled guilty to a charge of producing cannabis over the incident which happened on January 23.
Defence agent Laura Gracie said: “He tells me at the time he was using about £100 of cannabis a week. That was not sustainable.
“One of his friends suggested to him he might want to start growing cannabis.
“He thought that might be a good idea. This was his first attempt at doing it.”
Sheriff Ian Wallace ordered him to carry out 80 hours of unpaid work within three months and granted a Crown motion for forfeiture of the plants.