A couple who ran a cannabis supply operation from their family home have been jailed.
Police raided Nathan Williams and Nicola Threlfall’s home on Melbourne Street in Oswaldtwistle and found more than £1,700 worth of cannabis hidden around the house.
They also found £123 worth of cocaine hidden in a cooker ventilator.
Text messages from the couple’s mobile phones showed how they were in contact with drug users and suppliers over several months, Burnley Crown Court heard.
Father-of-three Williams, 26, now of Worsley Court, Oswaldtwistle, pleaded guilty to possessing cannabis with intent to supply and possessing cocaine. He was jailed for eight months.
His partner Threlfall, 25, also of Worsley Court, pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of cannabis and cannabis resin and was locked up for seven months.
David Clarke, prosecuting, said police attended their former home at 11am on November 20 last year and Williams ‘cooperated straight away’ with the officers and admitted owning the cannabis and cocaine.
Mr Clarke said an analysis of Threlfall’s phone showed drug related messages over a five-month period and included offers to sort out drug requests and to pass others on to her partner.
The court heard how on Williams’ iPhone there were two videos of ‘significant cannabis cultivations’ and eight different drug requests from people over a three and a half hour period on one day.
Marianne Alton, defending painter and decorator trainee Williams, said the offences were over 12 months ago and he has since made ‘great efforts to change his life for the better’, quit using drugs and was ‘taking his family responsibilities seriously’.
She told the court how he had got into a drugs debt and ‘unfortunately the way out he chose was this’. However she said it was not a ‘large scale commercial or sophisticated operation’.
Robert Elias, defending Threlfall, said she helped out Williams ‘as and when it was necessary’.
He told the court: “When he was in bed asleep or out she would step into the role of selling drugs.
“She doesn’t take drugs herself. She didn’t realise quite how serious this was. She realises now. She has got too much to lose.”
Duo blasted for their actions while children were in the house
Judge Beverley Lunt blasted the couple for carrying out the operation with children in the house.
Sentencing Threlfall, she said: “The texts show all too clearly that you were taking orders and prepared to deliver drugs and take orders without any instructions from the co-accused. I’m asked to be merciful because you are [a mother].
“But you should have thought of that when you were involved in this business.”
The court heard how Williams was already subject to a community order for an earlier conviction of being concerned in the production of cannabis.
Sentencing Williams, she said: “You were running a business from your home, there were drugs kept in various rooms, you were taking orders, providing drugs and in contact with customers and potential suppliers, and all of this while subject to a community order.
“Anybody who decides it’s a good business to run, especially in your case where you’re subject to a court order already, there must be an immediate prison sentence.”