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A man has been jailed for a year and four months after officers found 571 cannabis plants growing inside a house in Loughton.
They executed a warrant under the Misuse of Drugs Act at the property in Mott Street on July 15 last year.
Nicolas Vizzini, 31, tried to escape, but was arrested before he could flee.
Cannabis plants in various stages of growth were found in the living areas and three bedrooms. The majority of the plants were in the basement, where officers found 405 plants in seedling and early stages of growth.
Vizzini, of Mott Street, Loughton, admitted producing cannabis when he appeared at Southend Magistrates’ Court on August 13.
He was sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court on Wednesday April 14.
PC Charlotte O’Brien said: “The court heard Vizzini was brought by other people to the house to take care of the plants.
“Sadly, this is the reality behind the drugs trade. Criminals exploit people, especially those who are vulnerable, and employ them to grow or sell drugs on their behalf.
“The production and supply of drugs is also connected to a world of violence and intimidation.
“Cannabis cultivation is not a victimless crime and it’s why Essex Police is working every single day to target criminals involved in drugs supply and working to protect those they abuse and exploit.
“If you have information about drug dealing in your community, or are worried someone you know is being exploited, tell us so we can take appropriate action.”