Pensioner ‘didn’t realise owning cannabis plants was illegal’ after being caught on A47

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A pensioner claimed he did not realise it was illegal to own cannabis plants after he was caught with eight in the back of his van.

Officers were travelling along the A47 towards Wisbech at just before midnight on June 27 last year when they passed 78-year-old John Loveridge heading in the other direction.

They had been alerted to the fact his driving licence had expired and he had no insurance by ANPR technology.

Loveridge, of Fenland Way, Chatteris, pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis with intent to supply and the driving offences and was given a 12 month conditional discharge at Cambridge Crown Court on Wednesday (June 19).

Sergeant Hayley Carter, who investigated, said: “Loveridge claimed he didn’t realise cannabis was a controlled substance in its plant form.

“We take drugs offences very seriously and will take action wherever we find them.”