Saturday, February 09, 2013

Surprised police found cannabis plantation in shipping container hidden under man's garden

A man hid a cannabis plantation by burying it in a shipping container in his garden and tunnelling into it from his house. Adrian James took "significant time and effort" to set up and conceal, police said. The operation included automatic watering systems so he could grow the haul with little effort. The 43-year-old used a mechanical digger to bury it in the back garden of his home in St Ann's, Nottingham.

He then tunnelled in to it from his cellar, hiding the entrance with a board covered in tools. James was arrested in October 2011, after police raided his home looking for drugs. At first they only found cannabis plants in one room. But then they discovered the tunnel, and the "huge" container at the end. Officers found hydroponics equipment with timer switches and an automatic watering system for the plantation.

In total £86,000-worth of cannabis was seized from the house and container. Appearing at Nottingham Crown Court, James pleaded guilty to production of cannabis at a commercial level, and was sentenced to three years in prison. PC Steve Fenyn, who led the investigation, said: "When we arrived at the house it was quite a surprise to discover this sophisticated set-up, with a concealed tunnel dug through from his house into the metal shipping container in the garden.

"It would have taken significant time and efforts to dig up the garden, put the freight container in and cover it up, then dig a tunnel into the house. The automatic set-up inside the container also required very little maintenance from James. There is no doubt cannabis production would have continued here, had it not been discovered."

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