£1 million cannabis factory discovered in Welwyn Garden City

Welwyn Garden City cannabis factory

The £1.1 million factory was discovered in Howardsgate. - Credit: Herts Police

More than £1 million worth of cannabis plants have been seized after the factory was discovered in Welwyn Garden City.

On Tuesday, December 14, officers from the constabulary’s Operational Support Group raided a property in Howardsgate, where they recovered 550 plants, estimated to be valued at £1.1 million.

The mains supply for the building had also been tampered with as part of the cultivation.

A 42-year-old man from Hatfield was arrested at the scene on suspicion of producing a controlled drug. He was later released under investigation while enquiries continue.

Speaking about the discovery of the factory, Sergeant Paul Brown from the Operational Support Group admitted it is being treated as a case of modern slavery, while condemning the impact of drugs on people's lives and the community.

“The cannabis factory is being treated as a case of modern slavery and we have been working with the Salvation Army in relation to safeguarding those involved,” he said.

“The devastating impact of drugs cannot be underestimated and this case completely highlights that.

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“I hope that residents feel reassured to know that we have shut down this cannabis factory. Not only have we put a stop to this criminal activity but the building itself is now no longer a fire and safety hazard.

“Finally, I would like to remind the public that if they have any suspicions about drug dealing, please report it straight away. Every bit of information we receive helps us to build up a picture and take appropriate action.”

You can report any information at herts.police.uk/report, speak to an operator via online web chat at herts.police.uk/contact or call the non-emergency number 101.

Alternatively, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at crimestoppers-uk.org.