A WIRRAL man ran a secret cannabis farm in the loft of his girlfriend’s home.

31-year-old Ryan McLoughlin admitted producing cannabis involving 32 plants which had a potential street value of £6,000, abstracting electricity to run the illicit enterprise and possessing cocaine.

McLoughlin, of Cameron Road, Leasowe, was sentenced to four months' imprisonment suspended for 12 months, placed under supervision for a year with attendance on a drug rehabilitation course and ordered to pay £250 towards prosecution costs.

David Evans, prosecuting, told Liverpool Crown Court police went to the premises in New Brighton, at 8.40am on March 8 last year.

On being allowed in by the woman occupant they noticed a strong smell of cannabis.

McLoughlin was also present and he admitted there were cannabis plants in the loft and when it was examined officers found 32 plants and growing equipment including lights, fans and transformers, and the electricity power had been bridged.

When the outside shed was searched officers found six grammes of cocaine, said Mr Evans.

McLoughlin, who has previous convictions, admitted receiving cannabis cuttings from someone else and said he was going to give some back when they had grown and keep the rest for himself.

Keith Webster, defending, said after getting the cuttings McLoughlin looked up online how to set up a cannabis farm and way going to pay for the equipment by giving the supplier some of the plants.

McLoughlin, who has since started full-time employment for an engineering company, is remorseful and knows his cannabis smoking habit needs to be addressed, said Mr Webster.