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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Police discover 20 large-scale cannabis factories in Britain every day - so are we now a drugs EXPORTER?

By James Slack

From: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

Criminal gangs are now producing so much cannabis in Britain’s suburban streets that there is a ‘market for export’.

Police say the gangs have taken over cinemas, houses, pubs, banks and shops left empty because of the recession.

Almost 7,000 cannabis factories were discovered last year - more than double the
number found two years ago.

Incredibly, a report by chief constables says the gangs are growing so much cannabis
that – for the first time – there is enough to start selling the drug overseas.

increase

Incredibly, a report by chief constables says the gangs are growing so much cannabis that - for the first time - there is enough to start selling the drug overseas

Previously, the UK relied on smuggled supplies of the illegal drug, from countries such as Holland and Morocco, because homegrown crops did not meet demand.

The study, by the Association of Chief Police Officers, offers a disturbing insight
into how cannabis farms have sprung up across the UK.

Criminals are employing children to grow the drug with powerful heat lamps, and also to break into farms run by rival gangs

They are often run by immigrant gangs from the Far East, though there is evidence they are now joining forces with home-grown criminals.

They are employing children to grow the drug with powerful heat lamps, and also
to break into farms run by rival gangs.

The properties are being booby-trapped – with window frames wired to the electricity mains.

There are now almost 20 commercial cannabis factories being found by police every day, taking the total for 2009/10 to 6,886 – more than double the 3,032 discovered
two years ago.

It is more than eight times the annual average between 2004 and 2007.

More than 1.3million plants worth an estimated £150million were recovered in the past two years.

Last year alone, police seized almost 750,000 plants with an estimated yield of £85million, compared with more than 500,000 plants worth £65million the year before.

‘There is now a market for exportation,’ the police chiefs warn, though they are yet to gather intelligence that this is happening.

Across the UK

More than 1.3million plants worth an estimated £150million were recovered in the last two years

cannabis haul

Leafy suburb: Police seize a large haul of cannabis earlier this year in Purley, South London. Last year alone, police seized almost 750,000 plants with an estimated yield of £85million

The highest number of factories – 896 – were found in the West Yorkshire force area.

The largest factory found was in an industrial unit in Haddenham, Cambridgeshire, where more than 7,600 plants were recovered with an estimated yield of £2.5million, the report said.

It added that privately-owned houses, often in suburban streets, remain the ‘property
of choice for large-scale cannabis cultivation’.

Acpo also found the premises used for cannabis cultivation were becoming more varied and included disused industrial buildings, former pubs, cinemas, nightclubs, hotels, print works and even banks.

The report, called the UK National Problem Profile: Commercial Cultivation of Cannabis, also found that criminals involved in the cannabis farms were involved in
crimes such as counterfeiting currency and DVDs, money laundering, immigration crime, firearms, blackmail, prostitution, theft and people trafficking.

Reports of factories being ‘taxed’ by other criminals have led to criminals arming themselves with machetes and sawn-off shotguns.

Booby traps found at factories include electrifed window frames and doorknobs, a home-made device designed to detonate a shotgun cartridge, and an external side
gate wired directly to the mains.

Running a cannabis farm would lead to the criminal charge of producing a Class B drug – punishable with up to 14 years in jail.

Many of the factories are found after tip-offs from neighbours who notice blacked-out windows, hot walls, condensation or ‘strange aromas’.

1 comments:

carouser August 18, 2010 at 5:50 PM  

Thanks to British ingenuity and the hustle for an illicit underground economy, the British have gone from being net importers, to net exporters, an impressive feat in the space of a couple of years. But of course this hasn’t come without some very unsavory conditions that have allowed these ‘business men’ to flourish…

http://scallywagandvagabond.com/2010/08/police-discover-20-large-scale-cannabis-factories-in-britain/

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