March 10 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Two illegal immigrants have admitted being involved in a huge cannabis factory in an upmarket property in Ipswich.
Thirteen rooms of the large detached house in Henley Road had an estimated 1,500 plants growing in them with an estimated value of £1million.
Before Ipswich Crown Court yesterday were Blerim Mema, 21 and Graci Fekolari, 29, both of Henley Road, who both admitted producing cannabis on February 14.
Juliet Donovan, prosecuting, told the court that when officers entered the property they found the defendants hiding among the cannabis plants.
She said the men, who were illegal immigrants, had been involved in maintaing and cultivating the crop of plants and had been paid £200 a month.
Judge John Devaux adjourned sentencing until next month.
When police carried out a warrant at the prperty they found every room packed with plants. Officers spent a weekend gathering evidence and removing the plants and equipment from the property.
Following the discovery of the factory, Inspector Sarsfield Donohue said: “This was a very significant cannabis factory. It is certainly one of the largest factories discovered in the county and we’re pleased that it has now been shut down.
“If anyone suspects that a property near them is being used to cultivate cannabis then please contact police immediately on 101.”
Police are reminding people of the possible signs of a cannabis factory in their area: lighting and ventilation equipment; covered up or blocked up windows; comings and goings to a property at all hours; strong lighting day and night; high levels of heat and condensation i.e. windows constantly misted up; the constant buzz of ventilation; the strong sickly smell given off by cannabis plant; lots of power cables that could possibly link up to lamp posts so that they don’t have to pay for the large amounts of electricity they use.
If you suspect there is one near you please phone us on 101 or alternatively you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.