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Man arrested in £73,000 Wellington cannabis farm raid - with pictures and video

By Rob Smith | Wellington | Crime | Published:

Police discovered cannabis plants worth about £73,000 in an early morning drugs raid on a house in Wellington.

A man in his 30s was arrested at the two-storey semi-detached house in Bank Road, which had been converted into a farm for the plants.

The six officers who raided the building at about 6.30am found 73 plants spread across four rooms, plus weapons including a wooden bar wrapped in wire and a crowbar in a ground-floor room, which the 'gardener' had used as a bedroom.

Three rooms upstairs and one downstairs were full of plants and growing equipment, and officers said there was evidence of a previous harvest in the loft.

Cannabis plants inside the house in Wellington

Wires had been rerouted away from the building's main electricity meter to avoid arousing suspicion, and an extensive ventilation system set up to disguise the smell of the plants from the street.

An upstairs bathroom held a vat of water, from which the grower supplied a hand-held sprayer to keep the plants hydrated.

The front door had been barred and all of the windows covered.

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Police from Telford's proactive criminal investigation department (CID) and the local policing priority team (LPPT) teamed up for the raid after getting information from a neighbour about the cannabis farm.

The warrant to raid the building was signed off yesterday after the tip-off, and they entered through a side door into the kitchen this morning.

Detective Sergeant Jon Taylor of the proactive CID said that the one man who was arrested was the only occupant, but that the farm itself was part of a wider operation.

"I'm really pleased with the result it's got," he said. "I'm pleased with the information that was given.

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"We're doing some house-to-house enquiries in the area now, trying to establish who might have been bringing the drugs in, but also to do a bit of public reassurance. When you get police here the local public get a bit nervous.

"It is big business. This is organised crime.

"If people have got information and they suspect there's cannabis growing in their street I would encourage them to report it through the normal channels."

He said that once the house's electricity supply had been disconnected for safety reasons, the whole house would be analysed to try to learn about other drug operations in the area before the plants are destroyed.

Bank Road is a small residential street connecting Mill Bank and Regent Street, less than a mile from the centre of Wellington.

Police raided two other properties this morning as well, in Leegomery and Admaston. One other person was arrested and more drugs seized.

Anyone who suspects there is a cannabis grow in their area can call police on 101.

Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or at crimestoppers-uk.org

Rob Smith

By Rob Smith
Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based at Ketley in Telford.

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