Albanians caught throwing bags full of drugs in Wolverhampton
The trio had been offered £100-a-head to collect the drugs by a man they were too frightened to identify.
Three Albanians were spotted running down a Wolverhampton street and throwing away bags later found to contain cannabis worth up to £36,000, a judge heard.
The sighting came amid reports of a burglary in the area, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.
The three threw away several bags as they sprinted along Craddock Street, Whitmore Reans on February 21 but were quickly arrested, said Miss Joanne Barker, prosecuting.
She revealed the bags contained three and a half kilos of cannabis, valued at between £21,000 and £36,000 depending on whether it was sold wholesale or in street deals.
The Albanians – 27-year-old Sul Metalia, from Philip Lane, Wood Green, Ardit Zela of Blainderry Road, Lambeth, and Asti Cani from Melrose Avenue, Mitcham, both 19, all from London – each admitted possession of cannabis with intent to supply on the basis they had been offered £100-a-head to collect the drugs by a man they were too frightened to identify.
The court heard the two younger men came to this country alone as children and had been supported by social services.
Cani had been granted indefinite leave to remain in the UK while Zela was still awaiting the result of his application, explained Miss Laura Miller, defending, who said Metalia was in a relationship with a UK national. None had any previous convictions, the court heard.
Judge James Burbidge QC gave each defendant four months custody suspended for a year with a two month night time curfew and said: “Why you actually came to the West Midlands is not clear.
“You were found close to where a burglary had been reported. There was no significant report, perhaps because some cannabis had been removed.
“You were seen running fast carrying bags which after you dropped them were found to hold three and a half kilos of cannabis – a substantial quantity – which you had agreed to collect for a third party for £100 a head.
“You each chose to live in the UK and have told me you have no previous convictions. It is extremely disappointing to see you have decided to commit crime in this country. Now your future here could be in danger.”