March 24 2012
– A Metropolitan Police officer is facing jail after pleading guilty to growing cannabis.
PC David Price, 29, was captured on undercover video footage hanging cannabis plants out to dry.
Officers raided his house and found equipment capable of producing 18 cannabis plants at a time, with a street value of around £18,000.
Other video clips show the father-of-four openly talking about marijuana while his children play in the background.
Yesterday PC Price – who helped tackle London’s street riots last summer – pleaded guilty to cultivation of cannabis at Bath Magistrates’ Court in Somerset.
His girlfriend Emily Bayliss, 26, admitted being concerned with production of the Class B drug at the home they share in Keynsham near Bristol.
The offences carry a maximum term of three years in jail and sentencing was adjourned to the crown court.
Price, who is based at Westminster Police Station, was suspended following his arrest after a police raid at the terraced house on Charlton Road, Keynsham, last August.
He had been filmed by a neighbour hanging plants out to dry and talking about the drug.
Officers found cannabis sweepings under the loft hatch and hydrophonic lights and growing equipment suitable for production of 18 marijuana plants.
Involved: His girlfriend Emily Bayliss, 26, admitted being concerned with production of the Class B drug at the home they share
Price initially denied any knowledge of the drugs factory in his loft until the footage came to light.
Michael Collins, prosecuting, said: ‘It then came to light as a result of covert footage that there was a great deal of involvement from Mr Price in the growing he has initially denied any knowledge of.
‘Mr Price admitted he had significant involvement in the production of the cannabis once that evidence came to light.’
The court heard that Price would regularly stop and search suspected drug dealers in his role at the Met.
Bayliss’ solicitor Ian Lewis asked for the court’s leniency as she was of previous good character.
Robin Acton, chair of the bench, said: ‘These matters are beyond our powers of sentencing.
‘They are of such serious nature we are sending you for sentencing at crown court.’
The couple were bailed for sentencing at Bristol Crown Court on April 13.
They were arrested by detectives from the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards Anti Corruption Command.
– Matt Blake