Police seize cannabis farm containing hundreds of plants valued at £350,000 in Hartlepool

Hundreds of cannabis plants seized in Hartlepool.
Hundreds of cannabis plants seized in Hartlepool.

A cannabis farm containing more than 350 plants has been seized from a house in Hartlepool.

Officers discovered the large farm growiing at a property in the town's Nesham Road, on the Headland, following a tip off from the public.

Sgt Adrian Dack of Hartlepool Neighbourhood Police.

Sgt Adrian Dack of Hartlepool Neighbourhood Police.

Between 350 and 400 plants were discovered over three floors of the property, which are believed to have a street value of over £350,000.

It comes just hours after the Mail revealed that an average of one cannabis farm a week have been uncovered in Hartlepool over the last three years.

During the raid last night a 28-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of producing Class B drugs in connection with the cannabis farm and currently remains in custody.

Hartlepool Neighbourhood Sergeant, Adrian Dack, said: “We always act on intelligence from the public regarding drugs activity and are always thankful for their support when they come forward with information.

"This again shows that working together with our communities who come forward with information that we will act upon it and we encourage others to follow suit.”

This week police reported there had been a rise in large scale cannabis plants in Hartlepool over the past three years.

The figures, revealed following a Freedom of Information request, show the number of cannabis farms discovered has fallen - from 70 in 2015/16 to 55 in 2017/18 - although police say they have seen a rise in the number of large-scale operations.

Police say they are unable to put a value on the drugs recovered, but 10 cannabis farms had more than 100 plants when uncovered by police in Hartlepool, which had an estimated combined total value of more than £550,000 based on national guidelines of each plant being worth £550.

The number of cannabis farms with more than 100 plants was up from two the previous year and none in 2015/16.

There were 59 drugs farms found in the town during 2016/17.

Hartlepool police said almost £3million worth of drugs, including cannabis, cocaine and amphetamines, were seized last year.

Typical signs of a cannabis farms being grown inside a property include:

• Windows sealed and covered in a property or the curtains permanently closed.

• Bright lights on 24 hours a day or at unusual times.

• Heat from an adjoining property (cannabis farms produce a lot of heat). Birds often gather on the roof of a warm property in cold weather.

• Frequent and varied visitors to a property, often at unusual times.

• Gardening equipment being taken into a property, such as plant pots, fertiliser, fans and industrial lighting.

• Big electricity bills (aimed at landlords).

• A strong smell of cannabis constantly in the street.

Anyone with information on drugs activity is asked to contact police on 101 or report anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org.