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Group jailed for importing cannabis

These men have been sentenced to a total of more than 17 years in prison Credit: Surrey Police

For men have been jailed for importing more than a quarter of a million pounds worth of cannabis.

A complex investigation which involved analysing CCTV footage and tracking car number plates led to the arrests.

The men were sentenced to a total of more than 17 years at Guildford Crown Court.

Portsmouth man jailed for suitcase full of cannabis

Suitcase contained 11 bags of herbal cannabis Credit: National Crime Agency

A 20-year-old man from Portsmouth has been jailed for more than three-and-a-half years for trying to smuggle a suitcase full of cannabis into the UK through Edinburgh Airport.

Henry Alden, from St Andrews Road in Portsmouth was stopped by Border Force officers as he stepped off a flight from Barcelona on 19 May 2015. He was carrying a small plastic bag containing a change of clothes and a phone charger, but when officers searched his checked in luggage they found it contained nothing but eleven bags of herbal cannabis.

The total weight of the drugs was around 12 kilos which would have had a likely potential street value of around £110,000.


Man jailed for production of cannabis

Thang Cao Do has been sentenced to 27 months in prison Credit: Sussex Police

A man has been jailed for more than two years after around 2,000 plants were found in Heathfield in January this year.

Police discovered a large cannabis farm at a unit on an industrial estate in Heathfield on Friday 23 January, after being alerted by bailiffs who had visited a unit on the Ghyll Industrial Estate. The cannabis plants would have had a street value of £953,714.

Thang Cao Do, 42, of no fixed address, was charged with being concerned in the production of a class B drug. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 27 months in prison after he appeared at Brighton Crown Court on Thursday.

"We have disrupted an organised and significant operation, preventing harmful drugs from reaching the local community. I would ask all members of the public to be vigilant, as both commercial and private properties can be used for the production of cannabis. Signs to look out for are covered over windows or curtains constantly closed, people visiting properties at odd times, for example to water plants, extractor fans in walls and a sweet, distinctive herbal smell. If you witness any such suspicious activity please email information or call 101."

– Detective Constable Tod Stewart

Police seize cannabis with street value in excess of £7.5million

Police seize cannabis with street value in excess of £7.5million Credit: National Crime Agency

Four men have been arrested following an investigation into the attempted importation of more than two tonnes of herbal cannabis through Tilbury docks.

The arrests follow the seizure of the cannabis from a shipping container full of fresh yams which arrived from Ghana on Monday 20 April. If cut and sold in the UK, the drugs would have had a likely potential street value in excess of £7.5million.

Border Force intercepted the shipment, and the investigation was passed to the National Crime Agency and Metropolitan Police Service’s Organised Crime Partnership (OCP).

Following a covert operation, officers from the OCP arrested four men on suspicion of conspiracy to import Class B drugs on Wednesday 22 April. All are from south east London: a 59, 49 and 19-year-old from Maley Avenue and a 70-year-old from Borrett Close.

All have been bailed pending further enquiries to 30 June.

£7.5 million worth of cannabis seized from yacht

Three men have appeared in court charged with drug offences after Border Force officers seized £7.5 million worth of cannabis from a yacht in Newhaven.

The three men, two of whom are from Germany and another from Austria, were arrested after a search was carried out of the yacht on Friday.

The men have appeared at Brighton Magistrates Court today and have been remanded in custody until the 13th August.

Carole Upshall, Border Force Regional Director said:

“Our fleet of cutters operate 24 hours a day responding to intelligence and patrolling the length and breadth of the UK. They play a key role in intercepting and deterring shipments of drugs and other prohibited goods, as well as criminal gangs who attempt to traffic people into the country.”

– Carole Upshall, Border Force Regional Director

Brighton MP to listen to those who use cannabis as pain relief

Brighton MP Caroline Lucas is to listen to arguments put forward by a group in favour of using cannabis for medicinal purposes.

She speak at tonight's launch meeting of the United Patients Alliance and hear evidence about why the drug can be of benefit to those with health issues.

There is an ongoing debate about the use of cannabis to treat conditions such as multiple sclerosis, and provide pain relief.

Guest speakers and medical cannabis patients will talk at the event on how the drug has improved their quality of life. It takes place at the Brighthelm Centre at 7.30pm.

Ms Lucas, the Green party MP for Brighton Pavilion backs a carefully regulated assessment into cannabis being permitted for medicinal purposes.

She said: "It’s vital that drugs policy is driven by an evidence based approach and I look forward to hearing more about the evidence about the medicinal benefits of cannabis, which has looked at the experience of some states in the US, where there has been regulated supply to meet medical need under strict regulation."

– Brighton MP Caroline Lucas

Also speaking at the event, Professor David Nutt, who has campaigned for Dutch style cannabis cafes. He thinks if they were introduced, it would lower the nation's alcohol problem.

Brighton MP CarolineLucas Credit: PA


Number of cannabis plants discovered at industrial unit

Hampshire Police have uncovered a suspected cannabis factory in the New Forest.

Two men, aged 25 and 26, were arrested on suspicion of cultivating cannabis and are currently in police custody.

The discovery was made at unit on Millstream Industrial Estate on Christchurch Road in New Milton.

A large number of cannabis plants that covered two floors of the unit were found.

Acting Inspector Simon Flint said, "This appears to have been a large scale operation based on the number of plants at the premises."

Large cannabis factory uncovered in Sussex

More than a thousand cannabis plants, with a potential street value of at least a million pounds has been seized in Sussex.

Two men and two women were arrested at the property in North Chailey at around 9 o'clock this morning.

Police are now examining the home and outbuildings at the isolated farm. Detectives say it is one of the largest sites they have seen for some time.

Class B drugs seized during immigration checks

Around 70 cannabis plants were found in a bedroom at a house in Brighton as officers carried out immigration checks.

The discovery was made at the house on St James' Street Mews.

A 33-year-old Algerian man, who had over stayed his visa, was arrested.

Sussex police are now investigating the matter further and questioning the man.

Richard Lederle, head of Kent & Sussex Home Office Immigration Enforcement team said:

This was an excellent piece of work by all officers involved. Not only did they arrest an individual who was in the UK illegally, but they also prevented a quantity of Class B drugs making it onto our streets.

This was the latest in a series of operation tareting illegal immigration in Sussex, and for those who are living and working here illegally there is no hiding place.

– Richard Lederle, Head of Kent & Sussex Home Immigration Enforcement Team
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