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Six sentenced over multi million pound drug operation

The scheme saw a Cumbrian mansion used as the base to grow drugs. Credit: PA

Six people, including a man from Wolverhampton, have been sentenced for almost 40 years for their roles in a multi-million pound drugs operation.

The scheme saw a Cumbrian mansion used as the base to grow drugs. Cannabis worth up to £5.2 million was believed to have been grown in the house in Maulds Meaburn between June 2011 and May 2012.

49-year-old Mark Gallagher, from Wolverhampton Road East in Wolverhampton, was sentenced to seven years for conspiracy to supply cannabis.

Police became aware of possible illegal activity when they received a report of suspicious activity at the mansion. On entering the building, they discovered huge amounts of equipment, ducting and cabling consistent with that used to cultivate cannabis.

An investigation was launched and following enquiries it was estimated that between June 2011 and May 2012. more than 260kg of cannabis had been grown.


Man arrested after cannabis found growing in attic

Around 30 cannabis plants have been found in a police raid at a home in Coventry.

A 24-year-old man was arrested from the address in Watersmeet Road, Stoke, on suspicion of cultivating cannabis and possession of Class A drugs today.

Police find cannabis factory with heat-seeking helicopter

Police have discovered a cannabis factory in Birmingham thanks to heat-sensitive technology. The silvery glow given off under the special equipment shows unusually high temperatures coming out of the walls of the home in Nechells' South Tower.

'Glowing' properties picked up on the high-tech equipment are a tell-tale sign of cannabis production as the plants require significant heat and light input to grow.

Days after the flat was identified, officers raided the address and discovered 143 cannabis plants.

On Friday, the owner of the plants was charged with cannabis cultivation and a judge sentenced him to two years in prison, suspended for 24 months, and ordered him to attend a three-month drug rehab course.

28-year-old Benjamin Edwards was also made subject of a two-year supervision order and told to pay £100 costs.

West Midlands Police Deputy Air Operations Manager Martin Knowles, said: "The crew were heading back from a search in the Solihull area when they noticed a clear heat source at a flat in Nechells.

"Our thermal cameras can detect unusually high temperatures coming from properties several thousand feet away anyone growing cannabis on a commercial scale, using rows of heat lamps, runs the very real risk their criminality will be rumbled from the skies."

Police search teams found the plants which had potential to yield drugs with a street value of around £30,000 scattered throughout the Nechells flat which had been modified to accommodate light, irrigation and ventilation systems.

Cannabis bust in West Midlands leads to 100 seized plants

Credit: PA

More than 100 cannabis plants have been seized by police during a drugs raid in Wordsley, West Midlands, this morning.

Officers from the Dudley Community Action and Proactive Team forced entry to an industrial unit opposite the well known Glass Cone Works at 11am.

Once inside the unit, officers found several rooms of cannabis plants at various stages of growth. A large quantity of cannabis was also found in a 'drying out' room.

Scratch and Sniff Cannabis campaign hits the streets

People are being asked to help police bust cannabis farms by sniffing them out.

Cannabis gives off a different smell when it is growing than when it is being smoked.

More than seven hundred farms have been raided in the West Midlands in the past two years.

Today the Crimestoppers charity has been out and about with a scratch and sniff card impregnated with the smell of a cannabis plant to help people spot if someone's cultivating near them.


Police want you to recognise the smell of cannabis

People are being asked to use their nose to help police bust cannabis farms.

The charity, Crimestoppers, has produced a scratch and sniff card which carries the aroma of a cannabis farm.

The smell is different to cannabis when it's smoked. They hope people will recognise the smell of cannabis if it is growing near them and report it to police.

Scratch and sniff cannabis cards rollout across West Midlands

Credit: Crimestoppers

Independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers is today launching a campaign to tackle cannabis cultivation in the UK.

This week Crimestoppers and police forces across the country, including the West Midlands, will be distributing “scratch and sniff” cards to the public to educate and inform them about the signs to spot and detect cannabis farms by recognising the specific smell of growing cannabis.

The cards contain an element that replicates the smell of cannabis in its growing state.

Hotspot areas targeted in this campaign include the West Midlands where over 700 cannabis farms were identified by Association of Chief Police Officers across 2010 and 2012.

This figure is the seventh highest across the UK for this period.

Two million pounds worth of cannabis goes up in smoke

West Midlands Police has released a video that shows around £2m worth of cannabis being incinerated, after seizing thousands of plants across the county.

Several tonnes of cannabis were loaded into a van at a secret location and taken to an incinerator for destroying.

Mike Hall, a member of the Cannabis Disposal Team, says the energy generated by burning the plants is turned into energy, so criminals are inadvertently powering homes and factories.

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