Hampshire Incidents

Bringing you breaking news from across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight

Cannabis cultivation located at property in Basingstoke

On Friday 1 October, officers from the Basingstoke High Harm Team executed a warrant at an address on Gainsborough Road.

Officers searched the property and found a large number of cannabis plants.

A 20-year-old man, from Basingstoke, was arrested on suspicion of cultivating cannabis plants.

He has been released on bail and our enquiries are ongoing.

Police know that a lot of people think it is just a bit of cannabis, 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, who are likely to engage in very serious violence involving weapons, such as firearms.

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.

This is why police are keen to hear from people who suspect there is a cannabis cultivation, or drug-related activity, taking place.

Every call you make is logged and helps police build up an intelligence picture about what might be happening in the community.

This allows police to take action and prevent your neighbourhood from harm.

People can contact police on 101 or online at https://www.hampshire.police.uk/ro/report/.

Alternatively you can report to Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at https://crimestoppers-uk.org/.

Can you spot the signs of cannabis cultivation?

There’s a strong, sickly smell: It might sound obvious, but most cannabis grows are discovered by passers-by or keen-nosed residents catching a whiff of the drug’s familiar smell.
High levels of condensation: Landlords might notice damp on the walls or peeling wallpaper, while from the outside a neighbour might spot condensation on the windows, even when it’s not the depths of winter. The condensation may well be due to the property having been turned into a makeshift greenhouse.
Constantly covered or blacked out windows: Are the curtains drawn all day long? Or have residents placed black-outs over all the windows? It might make it look like the house is unoccupied, but blacked-out windows could well mean that the inside is really bright, with a number of strong lights.
Cannabis growing equipment transported to and from the house: Thousands of pounds worth of equipment is often needed for large-scale grows – have you seen a lot of items being delivered to the house, or large items being taken in or out?
Constant buzz of ventilation: If you can hear the constant noise of a fan, at all times of the day or night, chances are it could be acting as ventilation for the cannabis to grow.
Strong, constant lighting day and night: Cannabis needs light to grow, so watch out for homes with bright lighting at all times of the day and night. Lights will often be on a timer switch, coming on in the middle of the night.
Lots of power cables and rocketing electricity bills: The lights, dehumidifiers and heaters require a lot of electricity. Growers will often hack into the electricity wires before the meter to that individual house, and so bypass having to pay for the electricity. If you are a landlord who gets a copy of the bill, has it dropped suddenly, or gone up suddenly? If you are a neighbour and your bill has rocketed – maybe your next door neighbour has hacked into your mains and you’re paying to grow their drugs?
Heat, birds on the roof, and a lack of snow: Cannabis factories produce a lot of heat, which can cause tell-tales signs, especially in winter. When it snows, the roofs of cannabis farms can be obvious as the snow melts, meaning it is probably the only house on the street without a snow-covered roof. Birds also like roosting on a nice warm roof…
Unsociable comings and goings: Are there lots of unfamiliar faces turning up at the house at any time of the day and night? It could just be a popular family, but maybe it’s something more sinister.