NORTH Wales Police have warned residents of the hidden impact of cannabis farms on the community, following the arrest of a 27-year-old man in Rhyl yesterday (Friday, May 30).

The force said that work was ongoing to dismantle the large-scale farm found on a residential street in West Rhyl.

The terraced property, where the 27-year-old was found and arrested on suspicion of the production of cannabis, had plants growing on a number of floors.

Now, the police are warning people of the risks that cannabis grows pose to others in society.

Chief Inspector Dave Cust said: “The criminals who set up these grows have no consideration for other members of the community. This particular one was in a residential area with houses on either side.

“The dangers posed by growing this Class B drug include modern slavery, general crime and fire. The property was fitted with specialist equipment, which included a lot of electrical re-wiring, all of which poses a big fire risk.

“They had tapped into the mains supply to bypass the meters by lifting floorboards and digging out some of the floor to get to the main cable from the street.  As such, before we can do work it has to be made safe by Scottish Power.

“Cannabis farms often look normal at first glance, but blacked out windows, a sickly aroma and the sound of industrial fans can be just some of the giveaway signs that a farm is running behind closed doors.

“We are working hard to disrupt and deter organised crime groups and to help stop neighbourhoods being exploited by these criminals. I would urge anyone who suspects a cannabis farm to either contact us on 101 or call the independent, anonymous Crimestoppers hotline on 0800 555 111.”

North Wales Police have released a list of signs which can identify a cannabis farm:

  • Powerful, distinctive sweet, sickly aroma
  • Frequent visitors throughout the day and night
  • Blacked-out windows
  • High levels of condensation on windows
  • Noise from fans
  • Large amounts of rubbish
  • Unusual adaptations, such as lots of wiring and fans coming out of the building

Signs someone may be a victim of modern slavery:

  • Does not speak English
  • Signs of physical abuse
  • Malnutrition
  • Lack of basic hygiene facilities
  • Restriction on movement or not allowed to leave property
  • Food parcels being dropped off
  • CCTV around the building