A MAN caught growing cannabis in his house has been ordered to complete 50 hours unpaid work.

Police found 15 18-inch high plants in a bedroom at Roger Bowers’ Darlington home, magistrates in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham were told.

Prosecutor Lorraine Cooper said Bowers, 36, of Bright Street, was searched by police during a night out on April 9.

She said officers found a bag containing a white powder, later confirmed to be cocaine, prompting them to search his home where they found the plants and a growing system.

Bowers told police he had bought two bags of cocaine for £80 that night and had already snorted one of them when the officers searched him.

He said he was growing the cannabis for his own use and had no intention of selling or giving it to anyone else, the court heard.

Bowers admitted possessing a Class A drug and producing the Class B cannabis.

Ms Cooper said Bowers was sentenced to eight years in prison in 2004 after being convicted of being concerned in the supply of a controlled drug.

No mitigation was offered and magistrates sentenced Bowers to a 12 month community order with supervision, part of which will address alcohol misuse, and 50 hours unpaid work.

He must also pay £85 costs and a £60 victim surcharge.