A SINGLE mother was pressurised into allowing her home to be used as a cannabis production centre, York magistrates heard.

Phil Morris, prosecuting, said Joanne Diane Michelle Ruane, 30, tried to stop a housing officer going upstairs when they made a routine visit to her home.

"The house is messy," she claimed.

But the officer went upstairs anyway and found 12 cannabis plants growing in her front bedroom.

Ruane, of Hessay Place, Acomb, pleaded guilty to permitting her home to be used for cannabis production.

For her, Steve Munro said "She was under some pressure regarding the plants being grown at her house."

They had been put there by a friend she had allowed to stay with her for a time.

When he left, two men started making daily short visits to tend the plants.

"She felt she had little choice but to let them in because of the pressure she was under," he said. "She tells me she was taken advantage of and she is not going to let it happen again."

Magistrates conditionally discharged Ruane for 12 months and ordered her to pay £85 prosecution costs and a £21 statutory surcharge.

Mr Morris said the officer was "met by a blast of heat" when they went into the front bedroom.

The plants were in a growing environment with heating, lighting and hydroponic equipment.

She had taken the door handle off the door and kept it shut so that her children could not get into the room.

The daily visits by the two men tending the plants lasted about 15 minutes each.

Mr Munro said she didn't get any financial benefit from the cannabis grow.