A vegan businesswoman, Sarah Taylor pulled off a real-life 'Heisenberg' with the help of her 52-year-old spouse, Ian. The couple was caught running a Breaking Bad style drug laboratory, selling cannabis, MDMA, and cocaine. The pair were said to have gotten into the business after getting into debt and are believed to have made over $200,000 from the drug racket in over a year. Sarah and Ian initially used cannabis as a 'holistic medicine' to treat their own mental health problems.
The couple was arrested in December 2018 when police stopped their VW Golf on the M62 near Manchester after smelling cannabis. Sarah Taylor was sentenced to an eight-month suspended prison term on Friday, November 5 at Bolton Crown Court. She was also ordered to complete 60 hours of unpaid work. On the other hand, Ian, who pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply cannabis and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and being involved in the supply of MDMA and cocaine was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
Makeshift lab to grow cannabis plants
A haul of cannabis plants plus MDMA and cocaine were discovered in the makeshift lab at the couple's home in Tyldesley, Greater Manchester. Police also found 14 liters of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the cannabis extract, stored in containers. "In total there was Â£4,000 in cash, 13.438KG of cannabis, and 14,747ml of THC seized estimated to be in excess of Â£29,000. The cannabis is estimated to have a valuation of Â£67,000," prosecutor Alison Mather noted. According to investigators, the couple had totaled around $200,00 in earnings between August 2017 and December 2018.
Alison Mather also noted that when officers first stopped the couple's car, they found 1.49 kg of cannabis, with a market value of around $20,000. Police also found text messages on Sarah's mobile phone "consistent with cannabis sold on a commercial scale." The husband, Ian, on the other hand, was found to have a "previous conviction for possession of cannabis in 2005 and for cultivating cannabis in 2014," according to the prosecutor.
'Ian had ADHD'
"He has a significant amount of regret that he has allowed his wife to become involved in this enterprise," Ian's defense attorney Andrew Costello said. He also noted that Ian had ADHD "which was not diagnosed as a young child and he relied on cannabis." "That led to a chain of events that spiraled out of control. He was now in massive debt which he could not pay back."
Announcing the sentence, judge Michael Blakey addressed the couple and stated that even though "both of you have not had the best starts in life," getting involved in the "drug scene was a choice that you made." "There is clearly a drug problem in society and those who pedal drugs must know there are consequences. It leads to all sorts of difficulties in society and it creates more problems."