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More than 800 cannabis plants seized on Merseyside - police urge public to watch out for tell tale signs

Police say cannabis farm would have annual yield of around £3.5m. Credit: Merseyside Police

Merseyside Police has recovered 878 plants at a cannabis farm in King Street, Wallasey following the execution of a warrant today The plants were growing in four rooms and were recovered alongside growing equipment.

Nobody wants to live next door to these house - police Credit: Merseyside Police

Every cannabis farm seized, especially a large farm such as this, marks a significant step in our efforts to disrupt the activities of criminals growing cannabis in Merseyside.

"Cannabis cultivation by criminal gangs brings misery to our communities as we know criminal groups involved in the cultivation of cannabis are usually involved in other serious and often violent organised crime.

"This cannabis farm was on a busy street of shops and flats and the growing of cannabis threatens the safety of neighbouring properties because cannabis farms are a serious fire risk. Electricity and water are never a good combination, and fires have been caused by the crude systems put in place by the people who set up these farms.

"Our communities can help us stop these groups, who are only interested in making money, from turning houses and flats into potential death traps. Nobody wants to live next door to these houses and we would ask that if you believe someone is using a property for this purpose, please tell us so we can take positive action and find those responsible for setting them up."

– Sergeant Chris Bland

Some of the signs that cannabis is being grown are:

  • Strange smell and sounds
  • Frequent and varied visitors to a property, often at unusual times
  • Gardening equipment being taken into a property
  • Watch out for plant pots, fertiliser, fans and industrial lighting
  • Windows sealed and covered.
  • Curtains are permanently closed
  • Heat from an adjoining property
  • Birds gathering on a roof in cold weather
  • Individually these activities may seem commonplace
  • Together they may indicate something more sinister
Public urged to watch out for tell tale signs Credit: Merseyside Police

A quantity of dried cannabis in bags was also found at the scene and the electricity was found to have been illegally bypassed.

The scene was secured to enable officers to recover the cannabis and forensically examine the scene.

Behind the scenes look at specialist cannabis team

Merseyside is home to one of the UK's only specialist units trained specifically to dismantle cannabis farms.

Granada Reports has been given exclusive access to the team, which last year seized cannabis with a street value of £25million and bust one farm a day on average.

Matthew Brown is part of Merseyside Police's Cannabis Dismantling team.

Watch Granada Reports at 6pm to see more on this story.

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