Cannabis factory with plants worth up to £90,000 discovered by police



Cannabis factory with plants worth up to £90,000 discovered by police


Humberside Police seized drugs and equipment after a raid at a property in Barrow-Upon-Humber


Cannabis plants found at an address on High Street in Barrow-Upon-Humber


Around £90,000 worth of cannabis plants was found and destroyed by police after officers carried out a raid in North Lincolnshire.

Roughly 60 plants were found in a property on High Street in Barrow-Upon-Humber after a warrant was executed as part of Humberside Police’s Operation Galaxy initiative.

Specialists have described the plants as very good quality and maturity, with a street value of £1,250 to £1,500 per plant.

A Humberside Police statement said the drugs were seized and the equipment used to grow the plants was destroyed.

Nobody was at the property when it was raided on Wednesday.

Another raid was carried out on a property on Smith Street in Scunthorpe on Monday. Two men were arrested in connection with the supply of class A drugs and money laundering.



The Illegal Cannabis Market Needs Tougher Competition



The Illegal Cannabis Market Needs Tougher Competition


The cannabis industry has hit a bottom with most cannabis stocks trading at their 52-week low. For long-term investors, making a decision is a matter of reading the future of the cannabis industry correctly. For example, the cannabis industry has experienced this slow down because of weaker-than-expected demand. The illegal cannabis market is only adding to the problem.

The Ontario retail segment has been slow to pick up due to regulatory hurdles. However, the government is looking into ways to remedy its missteps related to the lottery system that resulted in weak sales momentum.


Scrapping the lottery system
The lottery system was a way to ease some of the anticipated supply concerns. For example, Ontario could have about 1,000 legal cannabis stores. Perhaps, to ensure that only enough stores open to meet the supply capacity, only 75 retail licenses made its way to the retailers.

However, this has caused a backlog for making legal cannabis products available. So, the demand has shifted to the black market. Cannabis NB, one of the cannabis retailers in Canada, believes that illegal cannabis dispensaries are the reason for the slowdown in the legal space.


Beating the illegal market: The price catalyst


Why Canadians are turning to the illegal cannabis market is a matter of economics. Cheaper products in the illegal market make it attractive to consumers. Some even claim that cannabis in the black market is of higher quality. If cannabis companies were to look into concerns, pricing and quality would be the top two on their list. It is clear that Canadian cannabis producers will need to be tougher competition for the black market dealers.

I believe that as companies like Aphria (APHA) and Cronos Group (CRON) work to expand their facilities, there are economies of scale that may occur. As costs spread across a larger volume, the potential for equating prices on legal cannabis is not a distant dream. In fact, one StatCan research showed that the price gap between legal and illegal cannabis is closing.


The quality catalyst
It appears getting the quality right is more of an art than science. There is subjectivity involved to conclude the quality of cannabis products. One of Supreme Cannabis’ producer states that testing the final product in the lab isn’t enough.

Provided legal cannabis players follow regulations as they gain experience, there is more likelihood for the quality to catch up with the illegal market. Nonetheless, getting people to believe legal cannabis is a higher quality may remain a hurdle. Recall, quality is a subjective decision.





NICE gives greenlight to two cannabis-based drugs



NICE gives greenlight to two cannabis-based drugs


Doctors in the UK can now prescribe two cannabis-based medicinal products, which can benefit people with medical conditions such as epilepsy and spasticity.


This is according to new guidance published from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), which provides recommendations about the prescribing of cannabis-based medicinal products for people with intractable nausea and vomiting, chronic pain, spasticity and severe treatment-resistant epilepsy.

The guidance states that two cannabis-based products, Epidyolex and Sativex, will now be available as licensed drugs which can be prescribed by doctors who are registered as specialist medical practitioners.

NICE recommends Epidyolex as an anti-epileptic treatment for people with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) or Dravet syndrome, who experience severe seizures.

And it approves Sativex for the treatment of people with multiple sclerosis (MS) related spasticity, in particular in cases where the condition has not responded to other medication.

Physiotherapists are not able to prescribe these medicines as they are controlled drugs, which are not on the physiotherapist controlled drug list,  but CSP professional adviser Jenny Nissler said: ‘This succinct guideline is relevant to physiotherapy services, for awareness of the current approved use of these products.

‘It sets out recommendations for chronic pain, spasticity, severe treatment-resistant epilepsy and intractable nausea and vomiting.

‘Further sections include recommendations for research in these areas, including for fibromyalgia and for chronic pain in children – as well as the use of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in combination with cannabidiol (CBD)’.




Charges against man who killed Jewish kindergarten teacher while chanting verses from the Koran are DROPPED after it is ruled he suffered a psychotic episode by smoking cannabis



Charges against man who killed Jewish kindergarten teacher while chanting verses from the Koran are DROPPED after it is ruled he suffered a psychotic episode by smoking cannabis


Daily Mail


A Muslim man who killed a Jewish kindergarten teacher has had murder charges against him dropped after it was ruled he suffered a psychotic episode by smoking cannabis.

Kobili Traore, 29, is believed to have tortured Sarah Halimi with beatings for hours in her Paris apartment while reciting lines from the Koran on April 4, 2017.

The Mali immigrant then shoved the 65-year-old mother-of-three from the eleventh arrondissement building before reportedly yelling: ‘I’ve killed the Shaitan (devil)!’


Earlier this week he admitted killing her but said he did not recognise when he broke in and claimed he was not aware of his actions.

‘I felt persecuted. When I saw the Torah and a chandelier in her home I felt oppressed. I saw her face transforming,’ he said according to The Jewish Chronicle.

Prosecutors disagreed over how to deal with the killer, with local ones initially calling for him to be tried but the senior procureur général saying he should be put in hospital.


Psychiatric examinations of the defendant, who claims to smoke up to 15 joints per day, found his mental functioning was impaired due to his cannabis intake.

Although three assessments determined Traore’s long-term drug habit had not inflicted him with mental illness, their verdicts differed insofar as his mental capacity during the killing.

A hearing on Wednesday heard Traoré shouted ‘a woman is trying to kill herself’ before he threw her from the balcony.


Lawyers for Ms Halimi’s family claimed this proved he was mounting a defence from the beginning.

The defendant’s lawyer Thomas Bidnic said: ‘This is Sarah Halimi’s tragedy, her family’s tragedy and this boy’s tragedy, although I’m not comparing the two. Sending him to hospital is not ideal nor sending him to prison.’

He admitted Traoré is ‘still a threat’ while he remains in a hospital getting limited medication.

A ruling on if he should face trial will be decided on December 19.





Drug ring rented properties and turned them into cannabis farms



Drug ring rented properties and turned them into cannabis farms


Four men used false documents and fake names to rent the houses out


Liverpool Echo





A huge drug ring property plot saw ordinary homes turned into illegal farms.

Four men rented a number of houses out across Runcorn and Merseyside before turning them into large cannabis farms.

The drugs were produced as part of a widespread in order to produce a widespread cannabis supply network.

It was reported that the men, from Runcorn, Liverpool , St Helens and Wallasey, would provide false documents under fabricated names to letting agents then move large equipment into the property to cultivate and produce cannabis.

Although the men rented the property they claimed they were sub-letting it to make a profit.


During a policing operation, which began in February 2018, cannabis was seized from the organised crime group to the value of several thousand pounds.

Lee Williams, aged 35, of Masseyfield Road in Runcorn rented a number of premises.


In February officers raided one on Water Street in Runcorn, which he had been renting for two years, and found the remains of a cannabis farm.

Another property on The Uplands, Runcorn was reported as having strong smells of cannabis and burning coming from it.

Inside there were large amounts of equipment used to build a drug farm.


Williams also rented a home on Seddon Street in St Helens where around 50 cannabis plants were seized from two bedrooms located on the first floor.

When interviewed by officers Williams said he had “no clue” how to grow cannabis or what equipment is used to produce it.


Further investigation resulted in an address on Carnegie Crescent in St Helens being used by Liam Miller, aged 24, of Gladstone Street in St Helens, who also cultivated the growth of a cannabis farm.

Miller was stopped by police as he accompanied John McDonough, aged 31, formerly of Stanley Avenue in Wallasey – as they drove along Palacefields in Runcorn.

A search of the car found items linked to cannabis cultivation including lights, transformers and fans.


McDonough’s dad Jason McDonough, aged 50, of Little Heath Road in Liverpool was found to have rented a property on Tasker Terrace in Rainhill, which contained cannabis plants in the upstairs bedroom.

Another property controlled and rented by the group on Grove Road in New Ferry was found to contain over 200 cannabis plants in a sophisticated set-up.



When Williams and John McDonough were wanted by police they attempted to avoid being caught by hiding out in a hotel room.

When arrested officers recovered £3000 in cash and two mobile phones along with a hire car containing electric drills and gloves believed to have been used to produce cannabis.


Detective Sergeant Rob McLoughlin, of Runcorn Local Policing Unit, said: “These men were extremely sophisticated in orchestrating an enterprise to profit from the cultivation of cannabis.

“They colluded to conceal their crimes through manipulation by providing false details to letting agents in order to rent properties and conceal large amounts of drugs and equipment inside.

“Despite the men attempting to mislead police and evade capture, officers worked incredibly hard to gather information and evidence to ensure they had no option but to admit to their crimes and be served a prison sentence.”


All four men pleaded guilty to conspiracy in the production of cannabis and were each sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court on Friday 29 November.

John McDonough was sentenced to five years and three months.

Jason McDonough will serve three years and six months,

Williams was told he will be sentenced to three years and six months and Miller will serve 18 months.



Medical grade weed industry needs more foreign investment



Medical grade weed industry needs more foreign investment


It’s not new that marijuana is legal in certain parts of the world. In Colombia, medical grade weed is a growing business, but there’s a lack of funding to cultivate an efficient value chain.


29 Nov 2019





Number of children requiring treatment for cannabis misuse failed to improve in the last 3 years



Number of children requiring treatment for cannabis misuse failed to improve in the last 3 years


Public Health England has today revealed that a staggering 12,702 young people entered treatment last year because of problems with cannabis. The report shows that this figure is 88% of all young people in treatment for drugs and alcohol (14,485), proving just how lethal cannabis misuse can be.

The report also highlights that the proportion of young people requiring treatment for cannabis misuse has failed to improve in the last 3 years, sparking concern and anger from cannabis addiction treatment experts as the debate over legalization continues.

The majority of young people in contact with drug and alcohol treatment services last year were age just 15. Alarmingly, over a thousand people treated specifically for cannabis problems were age 13 or under, with a further 2,187 14 year olds receiving treatment for cannabis.


Almost all young people who received treatment last year (86%) live at home with their parents, yet it was their schools who processed the majority of referrals for children to receive the treatment and support they needed.

Today’s report has ignited the debate on cannabis legalization in the UK, after a recent promise by Liberal Democrat’s Jo Swinson to legalize cannabis for those age 18 and over in the current election campaign.

But cannabis addiction treatment experts at UKAT are concerned that these figures aren’t even scratching the surface of the problem in this country.

Nuno Albuquerque, Group Treatment Lead at UKAT comments:


Today’s report paints a worrying but incomplete picture; there will be thousands more out there struggling in silence.

The fact that political parties are using the notion of cannabis legalization in their election campaign is flippant and unnerving, as more thought should be given to the thousands of young people already struggling with cannabis misuse as an illegal substance; to legalize it would open it up and almost encourage it on a mass scale.

We treat upwards of 2,000 people every year at UKAT and we know through one to one and group therapy that the vast majority of their drug addictions started with cannabis. Not only is it a gateway drug, but it is dangerously addictive on it’s own. Legalizing it will embed it socially into society, and this country will see future generations crippled with cannabis and alcohol problems.”


Canada was the second country to legalize cannabis, but one year on has just reported dismal results as pot smokers are reluctant to leave the black market behind.


UK Addiction Treatment Group



Hope for dozens of families as country’s first medical cannabis charity plans to offer grants to epilepsy and MS patients forking out for private prescriptions



Hope for dozens of families as country’s first medical cannabis charity plans to offer grants to epilepsy and MS patients forking out for private prescriptions


Daily Mail


Dozens of patients needing medicinal cannabis could be given free prescriptions by a charity hoping to help poor families.   

MailOnline can reveal the Sapphire Medical Foundation is hoping to launch in early 2020. 

The charity – not yet approved by British regulators – plans to dish out grants for the hard-to-access drug to 20 patients in its first year. 

Dozens of low income families have forked out up to £2,000 a month for private prescriptions of medicinal cannabis.  

Sapphire, which will be the first of its kind in the UK and set up with the help of an MP, said it wants to help families who may struggle to afford these bills.

The charity said it didn’t want poor patients to be denied the drugs, which advocates say are ‘life-changing’ for alleviating crippling pain and seizures. 


Despite a law change to legalise medical cannabis last November, there have reportedly only been two NHS prescriptions written.

A lack of clear guidance on how to prescribe it and issues over funding for the drugs has prevented many patients from getting the drugs they are desperate for.

This means many who are battling severe epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and chronic pain are using costly private clinics to get hold of the drug.

Others have ventured abroad in search of medicines, with some bringing them into the UK illegally and risking jail.

Medicines derived from cannabis are not routinely available on the NHS because of concerns not enough research has been done into the benefits of THC.

THC is the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, which advocates claim is what helps the medicines combat crippling pain and seizures.     


Campaigners hope the launch of the charity will heap pressure on NICE to make the the medicines available.

Patients who receive grants through the Sapphire Medical Foundation will have access to cannabis medicines through the Sapphire Medical Clinic in Marylebone, London, which is run by the same owners. 

MailOnline revealed last month it had become the first practice in Britain to be Government-approved for dishing out medicinal cannabis prescriptions. 

The foundation’s grants will cover the entire costs of the drugs for up to a year, after which patients will be asked to reapply for consideration of further funding.

The average prescription for medical cannabis is several hundred pounds a month – but patients with more severe illnesses are paying thousands. 

Any patient is eligible to apply through an online application form, but there will be stringent means-testing ‘in order to help the poorest’, the founders said.

One of the founding trustees of the foundation, Conservative MP for Hemel Hempstead, is Sir Mike Penning, who has campaigned in favour of medical cannabis.  

‘I was delighted to play a role in achieving the law change of November last year which saw cannabis re-scheduled allowing it to be prescribed by specialist doctors,’ he said. 

‘But one year on, the number of patients actually getting access is pitifully small. 

‘Private clinics are playing their part in widening access, but it’s essential that everything is done to make sure people on more modest incomes can get access.’ 


The Sapphire Medical Foundation said there was no salary cap for applicants but that income from all sources in addition to capital would be considered. 

Dr Mikael Sodergren, academic lead of Sapphire Medical Clinics said: ‘There is enormous pent up patient demand across a whole range of conditions including childhood epilepsy syndromes and chronic pain. 

‘But the medical establishment is taking time to adapt to this new treatment option and access via the NHS is extremely tight.  

‘We recognise that cost is an issue for many people on constrained incomes. We believe it is the right thing to reduce the financial barriers associated with cannabis-based medicinal products.’

The foundation has applied to the Charity Commission and Fundraising Regulator guidance to become a registered charity and expects to hear back this month. 

Sir Mike Penning added: ‘I am delighted to be a prospective trustee of this new charity. 

‘It is heartbreaking to meet the patients and their families who are in such desperate need of this medicine but who are having to either go without, struggle to raise enormous sums of money to pay privately or break the law to achieve access. 

‘I know that the public continue to be moved by the distressing cases that feature regularly in the media of patients and their carers being denied access to medical cannabis and having to raise thousands of pounds to fund it privately whilst still having to cope with the condition itself.’


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Mum accused of running cannabis farm with kids claims crop mysteriously appeared



Mum accused of running cannabis farm with kids claims crop mysteriously appeared


Sharon Gregoire, 52, was arrested after police raided her semi to find 10kg of the drug worth £96,000, a court heard


A mum accused of running a cannabis farm with her children claimed she woke up to find the crop had mysteriously appeared.

Sharon Gregoire, 52, was arrested after police raided her semi to find 10kg of the drug worth £96,000, a court heard.

Scattered through the house were mounds of plants.

Downstairs were electric fans, lights, weighing scales, and bagged packages labelled “kush”.




Gregoire told police none of the items had been in her home in Custom House, east London, the night before.

She told officers: “There was nothing in my house when I went to bed.”

Asked about the “substantial amount” of cannabis in her living room, she said: “Someone must have brought them. I didn’t hear nobody.

“All I remember is going to bed and then bang. There they are.”


Police found cannabis drying in her son Carlton’s room, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

More of the drug was found in a black bag on the roof of a lean-to at the back of the property.

Gregoire’s daughter Katrina, 26, denied throwing it out of her window when police arrived on November 15 last year.

Sharon Gregoire, Katrina, Carlton, 24, McGuinness and Jay Carter, both 32, and Crispin Kent, 42, all deny producing cannabis. The trial continues.




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