Nosey neighbours and landlords the key to cracking cannabis cultivation

Nosey neighbours and landlords the key to cracking cannabis cultivation

CANNABIS WARNING: Sue Knaggs, chair of Crimestoppers Darlington and Durham, and DCI Brad Howe at Darlington College where they gave a talk on how to spot a cannabis farm. Picture: ANDY LAMB (8257529)

CANNABIS WARNING: Sue Knaggs, chair of Crimestoppers Darlington and Durham, and DCI Brad Howe at Darlington College where they gave a talk on how to spot a cannabis farm. Picture: ANDY LAMB (8257539)

First published in News

NOSEY neighbours and observant landlords are the key to defeating cannabis farming in the region, according to experts.

A seminar on cannabis cultivation heard that large-scale farming of the drug was intrinsically linked to more serious, organised crime such as human trafficking.

Experts at the seminar, organised by Crimestoppers, urged communities to be more vigilant in spotting the signs of cannabis cultivation in their neighbourhoods, where one terraced house could harbour as many as 400 cannabis plants.

Landlords, Neighbourhood Watch representatives and members of the public were on hand at Darlington College as police officers talked about the impact of cannabis farming and listed tell-tale signs of cannabis cultivation.

Landlords should be wary of the organised crime gangs attempting to acquire rented properties in a bid to establish cannabis farms there, Acting Detective Inspector Neil Jones said.

They could help curb criminal activity by being aware of the common traits of cannabis farmers, who will often attempt to pay rent in cash and far in advance, will immediately accept houses, will appear unfamiliar with the area and – once tenants – will try to avoid letting the landlord into the property, often changing the locks.

Neighbours and landlords should also be observant when it comes to changes in a property or suspicious activity around that property.

Signs to look out for include people coming and going at unsociable hours, constantly covered windows, an excess of building or gardening waste, roof vents and high levels of heat and condensation.

Detective Chief Inspector Brad Howe said: “There’s a link between cannabis farming in communities and serious and organised crime and we will do anything we can to disrupt that criminality.

“There are a number of signals and indicators that may suggest criminality and we are asking people to be aware and report their suspicions to us.

“We don’t want people to think there’s a massive problem in Darlington and County Durham as there’s not but with this particular issue there are visible signs and we’d like people to know what they are and be vigilant.”

Today’s (Tuesday, July 15) seminar forms part of a country-wide operation run by Crimestoppers in a bid to tackle cannabis cultivation.

To report suspicious activity, contact the police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Comments (5)

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6:22pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Ron Carter-Bonsteel says...

Any Tenants caught growing cannibas should be brought to justice and punished and evicted from their properties. Worse among the private sector where some landlords are not bothered as long as they get their rents paid. No doubt there will be lots of people who want cannibas legalised and all Class A drugs but I have seen what the damage is done to young people and the not so young.
It's all about opinions and I have always nail my colours to the mast.
We can all agree to disagree.
Any Tenants caught growing cannibas should be brought to justice and punished and evicted from their properties. Worse among the private sector where some landlords are not bothered as long as they get their rents paid. No doubt there will be lots of people who want cannibas legalised and all Class A drugs but I have seen what the damage is done to young people and the not so young. It's all about opinions and I have always nail my colours to the mast. We can all agree to disagree. Ron Carter-Bonsteel
  • Score: -13

6:30pm Tue 15 Jul 14

behonest says...

"Detective Chief Inspector Brad Howe said: “There’s a link between cannabis farming in communities and serious and organised crime"

Well, he may have to say that, to try and convince us that smoking cannabis is a serious crime. Which it's not, of course, it's just cannabis.

If I thought my neighbour was growing some cannabis plants, would I shop him? Most certainly not!
"Detective Chief Inspector Brad Howe said: “There’s a link between cannabis farming in communities and serious and organised crime" Well, he may have to say that, to try and convince us that smoking cannabis is a serious crime. Which it's not, of course, it's just cannabis. If I thought my neighbour was growing some cannabis plants, would I shop him? Most certainly not! behonest
  • Score: 10

6:31pm Tue 15 Jul 14

behonest says...

I posted just after you, Ron. Let's agree to disagree on this one!
I posted just after you, Ron. Let's agree to disagree on this one! behonest
  • Score: 3

7:03am Wed 16 Jul 14

Equity1 says...

Got to agree indeed some landlords don't care as long as rent is paid however this situation is not helped by government rules on council tax demanding full council payment on empty houses so no incentive to seek out worthy decent tenant ! Illegal activity and problem neighbours should be reported to police ,every day if need be - they might act if you can find a cop that cares !
Got to agree indeed some landlords don't care as long as rent is paid however this situation is not helped by government rules on council tax demanding full council payment on empty houses so no incentive to seek out worthy decent tenant ! Illegal activity and problem neighbours should be reported to police ,every day if need be - they might act if you can find a cop that cares ! Equity1
  • Score: 3

9:45am Wed 16 Jul 14

JJ2000 says...

Equity1 wrote:
Got to agree indeed some landlords don't care as long as rent is paid however this situation is not helped by government rules on council tax demanding full council payment on empty houses so no incentive to seek out worthy decent tenant ! Illegal activity and problem neighbours should be reported to police ,every day if need be - they might act if you can find a cop that cares !
+1
[quote][p][bold]Equity1[/bold] wrote: Got to agree indeed some landlords don't care as long as rent is paid however this situation is not helped by government rules on council tax demanding full council payment on empty houses so no incentive to seek out worthy decent tenant ! Illegal activity and problem neighbours should be reported to police ,every day if need be - they might act if you can find a cop that cares ![/p][/quote]+1 JJ2000
  • Score: 0

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