A British scientist who used his microbiology degree to run a "magic mushroom" factory from his home has walked free from court following an investigation.
Police had found a tent in the spare room of Jake Kaine, 36, when arresting him on July 2021 after it was found that he had grown almost £6,000 worth of mushrooms.
Also found in the spare room were jars, fertiliser, scales, seeds and test tubes containing pieces and elements of the hallucinatory psychedelic drug, a court has heard.
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Despite his knowledge of the drug, Kaine claimed he believed magic mushrooms were a Lower Class C substance, where actually it is a Class A category drug.
Within the spare room, which doubled as a mushroom factory, was also a recipe book on how to grow the Class A substance with Kaine apparently selling the excess growth of drugs to his mates.
The 36-year-old, who received an MRE microbiology degree at Liverpool University after attaining a First in Human Bio-science at Lancaster University, had been growing the hallucinogen for his own use.
Chester Crown Court heard Kaine admit to supplying and producing magic mushrooms, possession with intent to supply and unlawful possession of 120 diazepam tablets.
Judge Martin MacDonald sentenced Kaine to two-years jail suspended for 24 months as well as 300 hours of unpaid work.
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In sentencing, Judge MacDonald said: "There was only one crop of mushrooms and I accept that you sold one £10 quantity to a friend, and one other £100 quantity to a friend and that these are the only actual sales that occurred."
Judge MacDonald also accepted Kaine's plea that he did not know magic mushrooms were a Class A drug, the same category as heroin, cocaine and LSD, Daily Mail reported.
He continued: "That does not amount to a defence but it is a factor to take into account and I accept your remorse and steps taken to address the difficulties in your life that led to this offending."
Substances to make the illegal drug were purchased online, while defence counsel David Rose equated the act to "someone growing cannabis for their own use and finding they have got rather more than they bargained for".
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