£500,000 of drugs grown by illegal immigrants

THREE illegal immigrants are facing jail after they admitted being behind a £500,000 cannabis farm.

Vietnamese men Duc Van Nguyen, 44, and Vu Van Pham, 23, and woman Phuong Nguyen, 23, grew around 1,000 cannabis plants in a bungalow near Elwick, on the outskirts of Hartlepool.

The operation was smashed when it was raided by Hartlepool drugs police in July.

Phuong Nguyen, of Willowbrook Road, London, and Pham, of no fixed abode, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to produce cannabis between April 30 and July 2 at Teesside Crown Court yesterday.

Duc Van Nguyen, also of no fixed abode, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and two counts of production of cannabis at an earlier hearing.

He also faces sentence over the £250,000 of cannabis grown at an address in Gilsland, in Northumbria.

Judge Michael Taylor said Duc Van Nguyen would receive “a substantial” prison sentence

He asked for background reports to be prepared on the trio.

All of the defendants were remanded in custody until they are sentenced in around three weeks time.