Police investigation launched as cannabis factory with up to 600 plants discovered in Chandler's Ford

POLICE have launched an investigation after between 500 to 600 cannabis plants were discovered inside a commercial building in Hampshire.

Wednesday, 6th April 2022, 3:41 pm

Specialist officers located the cannabis factory at a business property in Renown Close, in Chandler’s Ford, yesterday morning (April 5).

The plants are in the process of being seized as evidence but no arrests have been made at this stage.

Eastleigh district commander, Chief Inspector Marcus Cator, said: ‘This police activity was conducted off the back of intelligence and information submitted to us by the local community, who were concerned about drug-related activity in their area. As a result, we have managed to take action which will hopefully go some way to disrupting local drug-related activity and protect others from drug-related harm.

Press Association

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‘There is likely to be a large police presence in the area over the next few days while officers continue their enquiries and ascertain the exact circumstances relating to the drug cultivation activity. If anyone has any information about this, then please do engage with officers at the scene – any information, no matter how small or insignificant you think it might be, could help aid our investigation.

‘We are aware that local residents will think, it’s just a bit of cannabis and that this is not a big issue, but we want to stress that any production of drugs is linked to hidden harm. Large scale operations like this are often run by organised crime gangs. Those gangs are likely to engage in very serious violence involving weapons, such as firearms. They may also take advantage of vulnerable people, exploiting them or making them work in servitude.

‘The electrical requirement to grow this many plants is also really dangerous and can be a huge fire risk, putting neighbouring properties, and lives in danger.‘It is not just a bit of cannabis, it’s linked to serious criminality. That’s why we are really keen to hear from people who suspect there is cannabis cultivation or drug related activity taking place in their neighbourhood.‘Every call you make to us is logged and reviewed by our local Neighbourhood Policing Teams and helps us build up an intelligence picture about what might be happening in your community. This allows us to take action and prevent your neighbourhoods from harm.’

SSE electric supported police with enquiries and have since evaluated and ensured that the electric supply to the building has not been compromised in any way.