A DRUG user said to have a potential £26,000 cannabis farm at his Accrington home, has been locked up for two years.

Burnley Crown Court heard how Michael Maher, 31, was growing 61 plants in his loft and the crop could potentially have yielded almost three kilos of drugs.

Police found the well-organised and sophisticated farm when they forced their way into his home and raided it, last September 23.

Maher was on benefits and the cannabis, if sold commercially, could have netted about £26,000 on the streets. The defendant, of Stanley Street, admitted producing can-nabis and possessing the drug and had been committed for sentence by magistrates.

The hearing was told the defendant, who was at the property with his girlfriend when police forced their way in, directed officers to the cannabis farm.

The prosecution said the plants could have yielded 2.94 kilos of cannabis. Nobody else was involved with the production.

Kevin Preston, for Maher, said he accepted he had placed himself in a precarious position. It had been his first attempt at growing cannabis.

The defendant had been fully co-operative with police when they entered the property and guided officers to the loft area. He made full admissions when interviewed.

Judge Beverley Lunt said the defendant had committed some serious offences in the past, but nothing since 2006 and nothing for drugs.

The judge said Maher had chosen to grow the cannabis and even if the drugs had been for his own use, the farm was well-organised. She said: “It's a criminal offence and it's a serious criminal offence.”