01/12/2011 10:56 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Mum Left Kids In Squalor After Stripping Home Of Pipes To Sell Scrap Metal

Mum left kids in squalor after stripping home of pipes to sell scrap metal Getty

A mum has been jailed for two and a half years after her children where found living in a house with no water, gas or electricity after she stripped out the pipes to sell as scrap metal.

The family of four were found to be sleeping in one room of the Leeds property in conditions of squalor.

Officers found 20 cannabis plants growing in a bedroom, a full toilet that could not be flushed, and a fridge full of rotten food.

The skirting boards had been removed from the house in order to get to the copper pipes, and there was no carpet.

Kama Melly for the prosecution told Leeds Crown Court the authorities were alerted in March after a housing officer visited family and noticed the "repugnant smell."

The police and social services forced their way into the house on June 5, and the couple were arrested, but after being released on bail, the mother - who was pregnant at the time - was arrested again after admitting to breaking into other properties to steal scrap metal.

The woman pleaded guilty to neglect, production of cannabis and theft and asked for 11 further offences to be taken into consideration by the court.

She was jailed for two and a half years.

Judge James Spencer said: "You two decided that you had other priorities rather than these children. The standards which you generally adopted for your household were disgraceful."

What a shocking story.