£400,000 drug farm found

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DRUGS squad police have smashed a cannabis farm with a street value of more than £400,000.

The dawn raid uncovered 1,000 plants at an address down a country lane off the A19, opposite Elwick village, on the outskirts of Hartlepool.

One arrest was made during the operation that involved officers from the town’s drug unit and the district support unit yesterday morning. They were helped by specialised sniffer dogs and the force helicopter.

Sergeant Daryll Tomlinson, of Hartlepool Drugs Unit, said his team were pleased to confiscate the massive haul.

He added: “These plants could have been destined for the streets of Cleveland.

“The co-ordinated and robust effort of officers has once again stopped the vicious cycle of these illegal substances from affecting our local communities.”

The cannabis was planted in buckets in the building and were of various ages.

Police also found hi-tech, electrical equipment such as lighting and heating and the walls were covered and floor were covered in plastic film.

The plants will now be sent for forensic examination.

A 44-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of producing cannabis and is currently being quizzed at Hartlepool’s police station, in Avenue Road.

The Mail told last week how Hartlepool Police have started a war on drug dealers that has seen 13 jailed during the last year.

The crooks were given prison sentences totalling more than 40 years after being snared selling an assortment of powders, pills and liquids.

Anyone with information on drugs misuse taking place in their area is asked to contact Cleveland Police on (01642) 326326.

l A SUSPECTED amphetamine haul worth £10,000 has been seized in a raid on a house.

Officers searched a home in Hopper Terrace, Shoton Colliery, yesterday and discovered the substance, along with a small amount of cannabis.

Two men were arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply and released by police as inquiries continue.

Anyone with information can contact Durham Constabulary on 0345 6060365 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.