Fine for Harry Potter owl trainer

Kenneth Lea, 56.
Kenneth Lea, 56.

A former falconer whose eagle owls starred in Harry Potter has been fined for growing cannabis.

Kenneth Lea, 56, grew the plants in an attempt to self-medicate to ease the pain of his arthritis, a court heard.

The court heard Lea had no previous convictions for drugs but had been jailed in 2009 for causing unnecessary suffering under the Animal Welfare Act.

Lea, whose eagle owls appeared in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in 2005, extracted soothing oil from the cannabis plants he grew in his garage. Police found 61 plants at Lea’s home in Wakefield, in January. Their estimated total value was put at more than £23,500.

Lea pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to being concerned in the production of cannabis and possession of it. He was fined £600 and must also pay £85 court costs and a £60 victim surcharge.