A cannabis factory with the potential to create more than £500,000 worth of the drug every year has been dismantled following a warrant.
Officers entered an address in Cutcliffe Grove, Bedford this morning (Wednesday), as part of a pre-planned operation following intelligence that the location was being used to grow and distribute cannabis, a class B drug.
After gaining entry to the building at around 6am, investigators uncovered dozens of cannabis plants in three rooms across the property, with no one inside.
Early estimates suggest the location could be used to grow some £570,000 worth of cannabis every year.
Investigation Officer Sarah Thacker said: “Although cannabis can sometimes be seen as a substance which causes less harm than other illegal drugs, we know that it can be highly profitable for organised criminal groups who look to exploit young and vulnerable people for their own gain.
“We also know that cannabis is no different to other drugs in that it is intrinsically linked to much of the violence we see in Bedfordshire. We regularly find that drugs are behind criminal activity such as county lines drug running, modern slavery and human trafficking, and that’s why we will continue to pursue those involved in this criminal world.
“Our operation today has dismantled a cannabis factory on a nice, suburban street. These factories for organised criminal activity could pop up anywhere, so please get in touch with us if you have concerns or suspicions that this is taking place near where you live.”
There are some key signs to spot for a property being used to cultivate drugs:
A powerful distinctive sweet, sickly aroma
Frequent visitors throughout the day and night
Blacked out windows
Chinks of bright light throughout the night
Birds gathering on the roof, particularly in cold weather
In winter, snow melting unusually quickly on the roof
High levels of condensation on windows
Noise from fans
Large amounts of rubbish, including compost bags
Electricity meter being tampered with/altered and new cabling, sometimes leading to street lighting
If you have concerns about cannabis cultivation or other drug activity where you live, you can contact us through our online reporting centre or by calling 101.
All of these reports are fed into police intelligence systems and can help officers get a better understanding of organised crime.