Cannabis 'forest' discovered in London suburb: Pro-cannabis group steps up campaign with former cop as its leader

By @diplomatist10 on
A production assistant inspects a Cannabis plant in a state-owned agricultural farm in Rovigo, about 60 km (40 miles) from Venice, September 22, 2014.
A production assistant inspects a Cannabis plant in a state-owned agricultural farm in Rovigo, about 60 km (40 miles) from Venice, September 22, 2014. Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi

The London police have discovered a semi-forest of illegally grown cannabis plants in the suburbs and announced strict action against the guilty including the destruction of the plantation. At the same time, a former police official announced his decision to lead a pro-cannabis campaign group and regretted his past actions against cannabis users and growers.

The Guardian reported that police were alerted on the illegal plantation by a call from the public. The caller found plants growing on disused private land on Lower Marsh Lane, a few streets away from Berrylands train station.

The police also found the ‘forest’ of 150 cannabis plants and combed through the area. They said the plants were as tall as five feet and above. The officers from Kingston, southwest London police said the plants will be destroyed.

“There have been no arrests at this time and enquires continue, to find those responsible for cultivating the plants,” a statement said.

Police official Sarah Henderson described the scene: “The area these plants were growing on was the size of a football pitch and looked like a small forest of Christmas trees and was complete with a gazebo. Whoever set this up used a really remote spot; the only way to get there was a 20 minute walk through wasteland. But all their time, trouble and gardening skills will go unrewarded, as the whole lot will now be destroyed by police.”

While there are strict laws against cannabis grown on a commercial scale, in some areas police are a bit lenient on those growing cannabis on a personal capacity. In July, officers in County Durham de facto legalised the growing of marijuana by declaring it as no longer a priority. Police of that area said they would only go after drug users if they happen to be “blatant” or they got a serious complaint. However, the official policy of the government remains committed to ‘war on drugs’ and treating of all recreational and dangerous drugs as a criminal offence.

Former cop joins campaign

Meanwhile, Tom Lloyd, a former office with Cambridgeshire police announced that he will chair the National Cannabis Coalition -- an alliance of groups calling for legal access to cannabis for recreational use of adults and medicinal use for anybody. The NCC comprises groups such as Norml UK, the UK Cannabis Social Clubs and the United Patients Alliance with a mission that includes grass-root protests to political campaigning to influence decision-makers in the drug policy of Britain. Lloyd said he regretted his past role in investigating and arresting drug users as a policeman.

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