A CAT led cops to a man’s £10,000 drugs stash at his home in Duntocher.
The pet moggy was sitting on a window sill when it noticed police standing outside, a court was told.
And when the spooked animal jumped down from the window, its tail flicked open a gap in the curtains – through which police saw a tent with cannabis plants being grown inside.
Peter Cassiday appeared at Dumbarton Sheriff Court for sentencing after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to growing the class B drug at his then home in Carleith Avenue on June 26, last year.
Describing the events which led to Cassiday’s arrest, fiscal depute Sarah Healing said: “At around 10.10pm, police attended outside the locus in relation to a separate matter.
“They were carrying out checks to the exterior of the building when they noticed a cat on an interior window sill.
“As police walked past, the cat became alarmed and jumped off the window sill. As it did so it flicked open the curtains to reveal a tent, in which it looked to police as if cannabis plants were growing.”
The officers obtained a search warrant for the property and returned at 11.45pm, when Cassiday let them in and when they recovered 17 plants along with associated growing equipment.
The officers then arrested 46-year-old Cassiday and took him to Clydebank police office for an interview.
Ms Healing said: “Each plant had the potential to grow between one and three ounces of cannabis, giving a value of between £200 and £600 per plant and a potential total range of value between £3400 and £10,200.”
Cassiday’s solicitor told the court the drug had been for his client’s own personal use.
The lawyer said a background social work assessed Cassiday as presenting “no risk” to the community, and said Cassiday had not used any illicit drug since the offence came to light.
“He understands the seriousness of this matter and how it may conclude,” the solicitor told Sheriff John Hamilton.
“A custodial sentence will be in your Lordship’s mind, but there is an alternative available which my client is keen to conform to.”
Sheriff Hamilton told Cassiday: “This was a serious and deliberate attempt to cultivate an illicit drug which had potentially an extremely high value for you and may well have entered the public domain.
“However I’m prepared to impose a community payback order as a direct alternative to custody.”
Cassiday, now living at Brunswick House in Mountblow, was told to do 300 hours of unpaid work in nine months. He was also placed under social workers’ supervision until March 2019