Criminals who run cannabis farms exploit vulnerable people who have been trafficked into the country. They will normally be forced to live in terrible conditions and be subjected to violence if they try to free themselves.
Growing cannabis uses a lot of electricity so criminals will often bypass the electricity mains to avoid these costs. This brings with it a risk of fire not just to that property but surrounding properties.
On top of this, across the country we are seeing gangs involved in the production and supply of cannabis and other drugs using serious violence as they look to establish their business and drive out other dealers.
The information you provide is vital in tackling this problem. There are a number of signs to look out for.
Covered up windows – Curtains always drawn up or windows covered/boarded up from the inside.
Excessive security measures – Excessive security measures such as extra locks or grilles on windows.
Lots of condensation – Cannabis plants need a greenhouse like environment to grow. Look out for condensation on the windows, especially in the summer months.
Lots of visitors – Frequent visitors at unsociable hours.
Resident only visiting address twice weekly – Some cannabis growers are extremely organised and only tend to the plants a couple of times a week.
Plant growing equipment – Look out for potential growers taking lots of plant growing equipment in and out of properties, such as soil/fertiliser and plant waste.
Lot of cables and wiring – Cannabis farm set ups require lots of cables and wirings for all the equipment. If wires are still hanging from ceilings/walls after a week, this may be a sign of a grow.
Excessive electricity bills (For Landlords) – Have the electricity bills suddenly spiked or dropped? It may be likely that the tenants are fiddling with the meter.
Snow or frost – Cannabis farms produce a lot of heat. Be wary of a property without a snow-covered roof.
Bright lights day and night – Cannabis plants need light to grow, look out for properties with bright lighting.
Buzz of ventilation – The constant noise of a fan could be for ventilation for cannabis grows.
Vulnerable adults – Sometimes foreign nationals are forced to tend to cannabis farms and are victims of human trafficking/modern slavery.