Hot Factory Roof Near Leeds Canal Led Police To 400,000 Professional Cannabis Operation
A massive cannabis operation worth £400,000 was recently unearthed by the police near Leeds Canal. During a foot chase across an old factory building, officers noticed that the roof was unusually hot, leading them to make a surprising discovery.
The incident occurred when three officers spotted several individuals fleeing the area and attempting to hide in the undergrowth. This occurred while they were on patrol on the towpath at Canal Lane in Armley on February 4, 2022. Although the officers managed to apprehend one suspect, the others managed to evade capture. However, their attention was piqued by the extreme heat emanating from an industrial unit in the vicinity, combined with a strong smell of cannabis.
The officers decided to investigate further and entered the building. Inside, they discovered living quarters furnished with mattresses, as well as a makeshift kitchen and bathroom. It became apparent that they had stumbled upon a large-scale cannabis-growing operation. They found a room packed with plant feed and pots, with the walls wrapped in plastic and insulation. Upon forcing open a locked internal door, they were confronted with an extensive array of 354 mature plants and approximately 50 saplings. The setup was described as highly professional, complete with expensive fans designed to simulate natural wind conditions, thereby optimizing the production yield. Experts estimated that the crop could have yielded cannabis worth up to £330,000, with an additional £48,000 expected from subsequent crops.
One of the men arrested in connection with the operation was Kullolli Jorvis, a 22-year-old who denied any involvement. He claimed to have been sleeping rough in a nearby hedge and insisted that he had only recently arrived in Leeds. However, forensic analysis revealed Jorvis’s fingerprints in the unit and his DNA on a cigarette butt found in the growing room. During a second interview with the police, he chose not to comment on the evidence against him. Eventually, he pleaded guilty to the production of cannabis. It is worth noting that Jorvis had no prior convictions.
In court, Rachel Webster, Jorvis’s defense attorney, explained that he had entered the UK illegally from Albania approximately a month before his arrest. She revealed that he owed traffickers £32,000 for his transportation to the country and argued that he had been coerced into tending to the plants as a means to repay this debt. Webster emphasized that Jorvis had received no payment for his involvement. Additionally, she described the dire living conditions in which Jorvis resided, noting that he was sleeping on a dilapidated mattress within a substandard living area propped up by breeze blocks. She concluded by stating that Jorvis regretted his actions and expressed a desire to start a new life in the UK, finding gainful employment.
Jorvis’s co-accused had already received a sentence of approximately eight months in jail the previous year. As a result, Judge Ray Singh sentenced Jorvis to the same term of incarceration.
In conclusion, the discovery of this substantial cannabis operation near Leeds Canal serves as a reminder of the tireless efforts of law enforcement in combating illegal drug activities. By diligently investigating their surroundings and following up on suspicious clues, the police were able to uncover a well-organized and professional cannabis-growing enterprise. The subsequent arrest and legal proceedings brought swift justice to those involved, reinforcing the message that drug-related activities will not be tolerated in the community.