Shock as man arrested after 200 cannabis plants are found at Norwich property
07:47 05 May 2014
People living close to a semi-detached property in Lakenham have told of their shock and surprise after a cannabis factory containing about 200 plants was discovered.
Police in Norwich made the find at the house in Sandy Lane, off Hall Road, as a result of local intelligence they had received and seized the plants, a quantity of counterfeit cash, and cultivating equipment, including lighting and heaters.
A 58-year-old man who lives near the property, which is believed to be privately rented, said he was surprised to see police attend at about 8pm on Saturday night as he thought the house might be empty.
He said: “It was all very quiet. I began to think the house was empty but occasionally we would see a light on and very occasionally a person.”
The man, who did not want to be named, admitted he could not believe the amount of equipment police took from the house yesterday morning and afternoon.
He said: “I don’t know how they got all that equipment in there without being noticed.
“They must’ve come in the dead of night and sneaked it in because there was an awful lot of – all the gear you see in films. They filled up two vans but we had no knowledge that it went in. We had no idea it was going on.”
The man said students had lived in the property previously. He thought someone had moved in before Christmas although only very rarely had anyone been seen at the house since.
A couple in their 70s, who have lived in the road for almost 30 years, said they also thought the property might be empty and so were shocked to see so much police activity over the weekend.
They said: “We were on holiday last week and it has been quite a surprise to us. We went out and just saw a police car with forensics and when we came back there were about 10 policemen in the garden taking things out.
“We’re surprised to find out what’s going on – you don’t expect that in our street, most people are quite decent up here.”
Another woman, who did not want to be named, said she was less surprised about the discovery and revealed people had telling police “for months” about the smell in the area.
She said: “We’ve told them what we’ve smelt and they said it’s been under surveillance for a long time.”
The discovery comes just days after police uncovered a cannabis factory in Boulton Road, Thorpe St Andrew, where a “sophisticated” set-up with 20 plants was discovered.
A 48-year-old man was arrested at the scene at Sandy Lane and taken to Wymondham Police Investigation Centre. Inquiries into the find are continuing.
Anyone concerned about drug activity should call police on 101.