A FORMER care worker found in possession of cannabis has been jailed.

Police seized almost two kilograms of the class C drug - worth at least £8,000 - from the home of Man Yong, 26.

Yong, of Lower Burton Farm, near Dorchester, and Frederick Knowlden, from Stalbridge, North Dorset, admitted possession with intent to supply at an earlier hearing.

They were both jailed for 32 months by Judge John Harrow at Dorchester Crown Court.

The court was told police searched Knowlden's property in Jarvis Way Stalbridge, where Yong was living at the time, on June 22 last year.

They found large stashes of cannabis 'skunk' in bags and boxes in the kitchen, bedroom and Yong's handbag, with an estimated street value of between £8,000 and £12,000.

Her mobile phone had text messages on it from someone called Fred asking her to buy cannabis, prosecutor Mark Worsley said.

Yong, originally from Malaysia, said the larger amounts of skunk were not hers, and the smaller amounts were for personal use. She claimed father-of-one Knowlden had asked her to help him hide the box, which contained the majority of the drugs.

He initially denied all knowledge of the cannabis. Knowlden, 57, later accepted the messages were from him and admitted giving Yong £5,000 to buy the skunk, but maintained his involvement was purely financial.

Michael Tomlinson, for Yong, said she starting using cannabis after coming to Dorset and splitting with her husband. She fell into financial difficulties and looked to Knowlden, a lorry driver, as a father figure.

But his defence said he is a 'hard-working family man' who took pity on Yong, allowing her into his Stalbridge home as a tenant. They accused her of drawing him into criminal behaviour, exploiting his personality for reasons of 'old-fashioned greed'.

Judge Harrow told the pair: "Dealing in drugs of whatever description is an evil trade. I can see nothing to choose between you in terms of your involvement."

He told Yong he would recommend the Home Secretary consider deporting her once she has served her sentence.