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  1. hi Police find cannabis factory after being called to report of armed people in Leicester street The drugs factory was found in a nearby house Police were called to a report of armed people in a Leicester street and ended up finding found a cannabis factory. Officers were told there were a number of people carrying weapons in Ashleigh Road in Westcotes, Leicester, at 4.30am last Thursday (October 22). The police team, which included armed officers, searched the area and did not find any armed people or weapons but did discover a cannabis farm containing 200 plants in a house in Ashleigh Road. The force is appealing for help from the public with regard to the armed people and the cannabis factory. A Leicestershire Police spokesman said: “Police were called at around 4.30am on Thursday (22 October) to a report that a number of people were in possession of weapons in the street in Ashleigh Road, Leicester. “Officers attended and the group had left the area before they arrived. “Enquiries carried out at the scene found a silver Ford Mondeo had sustained damage during the incident. “Officers also found a cannabis factory within one of the properties nearby where around 200 plants and hydroponic equipment was discovered. “Enquiries are ongoing into both incidents.” No arrests have been made. https://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/news/leicester-news/police-find-cannabis-factory-after-4642923 Bongme
  2. hi Paranoid Aberdeen cannabis user caused almost £10,000 of damage smashing up flat looking for cameras A paranoid Aberdeen drug dealer, who took photos of himself posing with bags of cannabis, caused nearly £10,000 of damage smashing up his flat in search of surveillance cameras he’d convinced himself were there. Mariusz Rjatin, whose cannabis use had “spiralled out of control” ripped large holes in plasterboard walls, dismantled kitchen appliances and a boiler, and even broke a mirror in search of cameras. Yesterday the 36-year-old was jailed over the episode, which Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard was caused by his “drug-induced paranoia”, along with offences of producing and being concerned in the supply of cannabis. Police who were dealing with Rjatin over a separate matter smelled cannabis on him and looked through his phone, discovering photos of him posing with bags of cannabis and videos of him with cannabis plants. And after getting a warrant to search his home on Gallowgate, the officers discovered six plants and jars of cannabis, with the potential to be worth more than £5,000. Fiscal depute Alison Reid told Aberdeen Sheriff Court: “At the time the accused was the sole tenant of the locus. “During the afternoon of April 1 police officers saw the accused elsewhere walking along a street in Aberdeen. “He was dealt with in relation to another matter. “He was taken to Kittybrewster police office where officers could smell cannabis coming from him. “When he was booked into custody he was found to be in possession of a bag containing a white powder. This was later found to be cocaine with a value of approximately £30.” Ms Reid said he was also found in possession of two mobile phones and £1,692.88 in cash. She said: “Due to the circumstances officers were given authorisation to have a look at his phones. “They saw numerous text and social media messages. The accused was found to have been sending photos of himself with bags of what appeared to be cannabis. “Drug-related terminology was used in these messages indicating that the accused was concerned in the supplying of cannabis. “There were also videos on both of the mobile phones which showed the accused with what appeared to be a cultivation containing numerous cannabis plants. “It was also noted that throughout the time the police had possession of his phone, the phone received in excess of 30 telephone calls from numerous different people. “Warrants were obtained the following day on April 2 for the accused’s property. “When officers arrived there they recovered six cannabis plants, jars containing cannabis, two further mobile phones, scales and other evidence of a cultivation and general items of growing equipment.” The fiscal depute told the court the plants had the potential to be worth between £1,200 and £4,860, with the jars of cannabis worth £365. Regarding the trashing of his flat, Ms Reid said: “This incident came to the attention of the police as a result of the previous matter. “The accused had been a tenant at the property which was owned and maintained by Castlehill Housing Association. His lease was terminated in October 2019. “An employee of the housing who deals with maintenance arrived at the property on September 25 along with a gas engineer. “On arrival, the accused was coming out of the living room. “The maintenance officer saw there was damage to an electrical meter and as he made his way through the property saw there was extensive damage including large holes in plasterboard walls, bare electrical wiring was loose, the boiler in the kitchen was damaged along with kitchen appliances which had been dismantled.” Further damage was noted to walls in the living room, bathroom and cupboard, and also a bathroom mirror. Ms Reid added: “The accused said he damaged the property because he was looking for cameras. “The estimated cost to repair the damage is approximately £9,500.” Rjatin, whose address was given in court papers as Ruthrieston Circle, Aberdeen, pled guilty to maliciously causing extensive damage to the property between September 1 and 23 last year. He also admitted producing cannabis between March 1 and April 2 last year and being concerned in the supply of cannabis between March 28 and April 2 last year. And Rjatin further admitted on April 1 2019 possession of cocaine. Gail Goodfellow, Rjatin’s solicitor, said the Polish national had been a recreational user of cannabis for some time, but it “spiralled out of control”, leading to the breakdown of his marriage. She said: “He initially became involved in the production of cannabis by growing plants for his own use. When his own use increased he began to sell to close friends who were already users of cannabis. “He was also trying to fund his own drug use by selling drugs. “Come September he was still heavily abusing substances which resulted in him experiencing drug-induced paranoia. “Such was his paranoia at that time that he believed that there were surveillance cameras in his house and damage was caused by him in an attempt to make it stop. “He clearly wasn’t in his right mind. He was absolutely appalled at the extent of the damage and cost of repair.” Sheriff Philip Mann ordered Rjatin to be jailed for eight months. https://www.eveningexpress.co.uk/fp/news/local/court/paranoid-aberdeen-cannabis-user-caused-almost-10000-of-damage-smashing-up-flat-looking-for-cameras/ Bongme
  3. hi A South Yorkshire drug offender was caught with cannabis plants in his home after a police raid Police caught a drug offender after they raided his home and discovered 25 cannabis plants. Michael Wintle, aged 64, of Wood Walk, Wombwell, Barnsley, was caught with 15 cannabis plants in one bedroom and ten in another bedroom, according to a Sheffield Crown Court hearing, on October 22. Richard Davies, prosecuting, said: “The facts of this case relate to officers attending his address at Wood Walk, Wombwell, after suspicion of cannabis being grown at the address and he allowed access.” Police discovered high-powered lights and small fans and found ten plants in one bedroom as well as five small plants in a grow tent, and in a second bedroom they found ten cannabis plants, according to Mr Davies. Wintle told police he had been growing cannabis for personal use but said he only smoked cannabis occasionally and was planning to freeze the rest for when he needed it. The defendant, who has a previous conviction for producing cannabis, pleaded guilty to producing cannabis after the raid on August 22. Lauren Hebditch, defending, said the offence involved an unsophisticated set-up and it was consistent with producing cannabis for personal use. She added: “He’s started producing cannabis to stop buying it on the streets because he was placing himself in danger.” Ms Hebditch said Wintle had expressed a willingness to engage with professionals to address his cannabis use. Judge Michael Slater sentenced Wintle to four months of custody suspended for 12 months with a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement. https://www.thestar.co.uk/news/crime/south-yorkshire-drug-offender-was-caught-cannabis-plants-his-home-after-police-raid-3015992 Bongme
  4. hi Parents demand emergency funding for children’s medical cannabis FAMILIES forced to spend thousands each month on medical cannabis for their epileptic children have been given new hope. Twenty-seven MPs have written to Health Secretary Matt Hancock to plead for emergency funding. The law changed in November 2018 to allow medical cannabis on NHS prescription, after children such as Alfie Dingley, nine, and Billy Caldwell, 15, captured hearts. But strict guidance has since made the process more difficult. NHS Trusts have refused medicines containing both THC and CBD and instead offer Epidiolex, which only has CBD and does not provide the same results. Parents have been forced to go private, paying up to £2,500 a month. Many children receiving medical cannabis have seen clear results, with some being seizure-free for up to 18 months. But the Department for Health has said such "observational studies" are inadequate and insists randomised controlled clinical trials must take place which could take years. In Northern Ireland last week Billy was awarded a lifelong medical cannabis prescription on the NHS. MPs on the All Party Parliamentary Group on medical cannabis now want Mr Hancock to ensure parity with Belfast. Co-chairman Mike Penning wrote: "We are aware that Health & Social Care of Northern Ireland appears to have found a way to grant funding of this kind for a high-profile case there. "We hope you will agree that if such a move is possible in one part of the United Kingdom, it ought to be possible in the other nations." Murray Gray, eight, from Edinburgh, was diagnosed with an extreme form of epilepsy in 2017 that caused him to have fits multiple times a day, almost costing him his life. His parents were given legal permission in 2018 to buy drugs Bedrolyte and Bedica from abroad costing £1,400 a month Mother Karen, 46, said: "There is clear evidence these drugs work. "Murray has been seizure-free for 17 months. The difference is unbelievable. He goes to school full time, he no longer needs a wheelchair, he doesn't need a helmet, he is running around. There shouldn't need to be a trial." Elaine Levy, from Mill Hill, north London, has sold her house to continue paying for daughter Fallon's treatment, which costs £2,200 a month. She said: "I don't like asking for money, it isn't in my nature, but family and friends have been so generous. In the end I sold my house as I just couldn't see how we were going to pay for it. The Government said: "We sympathise with patients dealing with challenging conditions. "Since the law changed, two cannabis-based medicines have been made available on the NHS for patients with multiple sclerosis or hard to treat epilepsies. However, more evidence is needed to routinely prescribe and fund other treatments on the NHS." https://www.express.co.uk/life-style/health/1352771/emergency-funding-children-cannabis 1 Comment at this time Bongme
  5. hi Medical Cannabis Awareness Week: calls for NHS prescriptions Medical Cannabis Awareness Week is taking place from 1 – 8 November 2020. It brings together patients, doctors, sector organisations, supporters, and advocates to call for fair access to medical cannabis on the NHS. Two years ago, on 1 November 2018, the law changed to allow Medical Cannabis to be available on the NHS. Since then, only a handful of prescriptions have been issued by the NHS. Out of desperation, patients are funding private prescriptions – costing several hundreds of pounds a month ­– and up to 1.4 million patients are forced to turn to the illegal cannabis market to treat chronic health conditions. Patients unable to afford and access treatment are suffering due to the fear, stigma, and financial barriers preventing them accessing this safe, life-changing, treatment. During Medical Cannabis Awareness Week, Patient-Led Engagement for Access CIC (PLEA) – a community of medical cannabis patients and advocates – is calling for fair access to medical cannabis treatment on the NHS. Dr Mala Mawkin, Head of Market Development at Cellen Health and Advisory Board Member at PLEA said: “Even though doctors have been able to prescribe Cannabis-based medicinal products since 2018, healthcare professionals are still not equipped with the knowledge and tools to prescribe in the UK. We have made huge progress to be able to have pharmaceutical-grade THC/CBD medicines for patients that are cheaper and safer than the illicit market. The next steps are to invest in research, medical education and address the stigma faced by patients. “Events during MCAW are here to show patients and healthcare professionals it is essential to talk openly about medical cannabis to address the unmet clinical needs of people living with chronic conditions.” Awareness Week Most patients prescribed medical cannabis live with chronic pain, neurological, or psychiatric conditions, such as fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, anxiety, and PTSD, yet many continue to face stigma in their day-to-day lives and from healthcare professionals when trying to access this treatment. During Medical Cannabis Awareness Week, patients from across the UK will share their stories about the life-changing impact of medical cannabis and their difficulties in accessing a prescription. Individuals and organisations from across the sector are holding online events including a tour of a legal cannabis growing facility, and conversations with medical cannabis patients and doctors. PLEA is calling on people to talk about medical cannabis to friends and family, record and share their own story, write to their MPs, and even play medical cannabis bingo. Supporters and participants can stay in touch and join the conversation using #MCAW2020 and follow on Twitter and Instagram @PLEA_community. Medical Cannabis Awareness Week is an initiative of PLEA, which advocates for quality of life with medical cannabis, enabling patients to access their medicine free from the harms of stigmatisation, geographical inconsistencies, and financial barriers. PLEA supports research into the safety and efficacy of cannabis-based medicinal products, to enable evidence-based prescription for all. Abby Hughes, Outreach Director from PLEA, said: “It’s time to end the inequality and ensure everyone who needs it has the opportunity to benefit from medical cannabis treatment. During Medical Cannabis Awareness Week, we’re calling for fair access, we’re promoting medical cannabis education for all and we’re directly addressing the stigma faced by patients. We want people to have conversations about cannabis, ask questions and be open-minded. “Cannabis medicines are changing people’s lives around the world. In the UK, people are forced to pay privately, and it’s not right. Medical Cannabis is keeping children with severe forms of epilepsy alive, and it’s allowing people with chronic illnesses and conditions to live normal lives.” Lucy Stafford, Advocacy Director from PLEA, said: “I took addictive opiate-based painkillers nearly every day of my teenage years to cope with the debilitating symptoms from a connective tissue disorder called Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. I had to drop out of school and live with the horrendous side effects. I was a shadow of myself. “When I was prescribed medical cannabis, it changed everything. I’ve learnt to walk after years using a wheelchair and now attend university – I’ve got my life back. Cannabis relaxes my muscle spasms, reduces my pain, and helps almost every aspect of my condition unlike anything else. “All patients in need should have the same chance to live a better quality of life – we need NHS access. During Medical Cannabis Awareness Week, we’re asking people to share their story, destigmatise and learn about medical cannabis, and support our plea for fair access.” PLEA will host Medical Cannabis Awareness Week during the first week of November each year. https://www.healtheuropa.eu/medical-cannabis-awareness-week-calls-for-nhs-prescriptions/103498/ Bongme
  6. hi How can medical cannabis help the UK’s chronic pain problem? In this article Dean Billington, Chief Operating Officer at Brains Bioceutical, discusses how medical cannabis can help the UK’s chronic pain problem. Chronic pain is one of the most troubling and expensive issues for the NHS and patients. In fact, a recent study by The British Pain Society suggests that chronic pain affects more than 40% of the UK population, meaning that more than 26 million people in the UK are living with pain that has lasted three months or longer. The BMJ has suggested that this could rise to as high as 60% among those over the age of 75. For many patients battling this silent epidemic, it is a hopeless exercise of jumping from one prescription drug to another and at a huge cost. For example, the associated treatment for these patients is estimated to account for 4.6m GP appointments each year at a staggering cost of £69m. Unfortunately, treatment pathways often direct patients to opioid painkillers. A recent review published by Public Health England revealed that the UK now has the fastest-growing rate of opioid use across the world, with prescriptions rising by 22% over the past decade to 40 million prescriptions a year. This is despite the fact that NHS guidelines recommend that opioids should not be taken for more than a few weeks at a time as patients can become addicted to them. In addition to this, health experts have warned that opioid painkillers are not effective for 90% of people with chronic pain. With the NHS now looking to move away from prescribing these addictive opioids or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) – following updated draft guidance issued by NICE last month – there is an undeniable need for alternative medicines that are effective and affordable. Just last month, Dr Steve Hajioff, a former chair of the British Medical Association, said that cannabis should be made available legally using prescriptions to prevent patients turning to the black market for pain relief. As international medical cannabis markets continue to develop at their own pace, the UK has been slower to adopt wider change and embrace medical cannabis fully as a medicine. So, what is needed to progress the medical application of cannabis and how can the industry help sow the seeds for change? The medical cannabis sector in the UK In November 2018, UK law was amended to allow specialist doctors to prescribe a range of cannabis based medicines to patients who might benefit from them. This amendment to the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 (MDR 2001) was considered a landmark decision at the time. However, while there has been some support in the healthcare industry, very few prescriptions have been issued on the NHS. This is partly due to the lack of education around cannabis based medicines available to doctors, but also due to the responsibility placed on doctors who elect to pursue this form of treatment. With the exception of Sativex, which is a fully licensed drug, all other cannabis based medicinal products (CBMPs) are unlicensed which means that doctors are not insured to prescribe them. Qualifying for medical cannabis treatment is also complicated. Patients must get a referral from their GP to a specialist clinician listed on the Specialist Register of the General Medical Council. A YouGov poll (commissioned from the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis in November 2019) suggests that around 1.4 million people in the UK regularly use cannabis illegally for medical reasons. The UK’s failure to prescribe cannabis to patients is driving people to purchase cannabis outside of the law as a means of treating chronic health conditions. Cannabis as an alternative to opioids Amid the UK’s chronic pain problem, already an estimated 540,000 Britons are addicted to opioids. With prescription opioid painkillers rising drastically from common-use pills to a massive public health crisis, there is a need for more potent analgesics that are non-addictive and non-toxic. Evidence from clinical trials showed therapeutic benefits of cannabis, especially THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) and other cannabinoids in reducing neuropathic pain intensity in various conditions. In the United States, where cannabis has been made legal for medical purposes, prescriptions for opioids and anti-depressants have dropped by around 30%. Data released by the US Government suggested that prescribing cannabis medicines can also help prevent around 31% of deaths linked to opioid addiction each year. Moreover, a longitudinal analysis of the number of opioid prescriptions filled under Medicare Part D, showed that when medical cannabis laws went into effect in a given US state, opioid prescriptions fell by 2.21 million daily doses filled per year. With such promising outcomes, the UK cannot carry on overlooking the potential for cannabis medicines to provide an alternative to standard pharmacological treatments. Consideration for the clinical evidence There are currently three cannabis medicines that have been through extensive clinical trials and are licensed in the UK to treat specific and rare conditions. Sativex can be prescribed to treat MS-related spasticity, Epidyolex has been approved by the EMA to treat seizures in patients with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet Syndrome and Nabilone can be used to treat chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting where other treatments are not effective. Whilst the approval of these three medicines is undoubtedly a step in the right direction, they are expensive to access and only a limited number of prescriptions have been issued on the NHS to date. In fact, whilst the UK currently exports cannabis to the patients of the other 48 countries where medical cannabis is legal for pain treatment, UK patients still do not have access to the medicine manufactured in their own country. This is largely due to the fact that there still haven’t been any Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) in the UK for medical cannabis, and there aren’t any expected until at least 2021. Moreover, guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) remains cautious and calls for more research and large-scale clinical trials. However, the launch of Project Twenty21 in November 2019, which will see up to 20,000 patients trialing medical cannabis for various conditions including chronic pain and is backed by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, signals a move towards getting definitive evidence to convince policymakers on the positive impact of cannabis. Though evidence of the efficacy of cannabis is still debated, many laboratory studies have demonstrated promising results. Examples include a preliminary study from the Dent Neurological Institute in Buffalo, New York, which suggested that cannabis medicines do provide elderly patients with relief from chronic pain and other ailments associated with the side effects of Parkinson disease and Multiple Sclerosis. Looking ahead As the chronic pain problem in the UK continues to deepen and concerns of an opioid epidemic develops, NHS doctors will be looking to help their patients, not block access to care. Already clinical evidence from international studies is being taken on board by some physicians, particularly those looking to issue unlicensed cannabis medicines, however, it is yet to go mainstream. Continued research in the area is needed to advance NICE guidelines, draw extensive conclusions and create a climate whereby medical cannabis is accepted as a medicine for a variety of health conditions including chronic pain. There is a great deal that producers, pharmaceutical companies, the NHS, and the wider health ecosystem can learn from the experience accumulated to date. We can strategise based on data, emerging medical research, and conversations with industry experts and stakeholders to drive the efficacy of new models of care and alternative medicines. Ultimately, it is only with a strong, science-led and regulated industry that we can help remove the remaining stigma around cannabis, produce high quality, consistent, refined products that help the nation with its chronic pain problem and improve the patient experience and access to medical cannabis. Dean Billington Guest author Chief Operating Officer Brains Bioceutical https://www.healtheuropa.eu/how-can-medical-cannabis-help-the-uks-chronic-pain-problem/103474/ Bongme
  7. hi Men caught moving suspected cannabis farm equipment into Middlesbrough property Patrols were being carried out after residents raised concerns about drugs activity in the area Two men were arrested for drugs offences after police caught them moving suspected cannabis farm equipment into a Middlesbrough house. Cleveland Police were carrying out patrols in North Ormesby when they spotted the men moving items from a van in to an address on Beaumont Road. Officers reported that the items were equipment for suspected cannabis farming and that the address was being prepared for a future farm on Monday evening. Two men, aged 28 and 30, were arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of cannabis and abstracting electricity. Northern Power Grid attended the property to make the electrics safe and all items have now been emptied from the address. Sergeant John Sproson, from Middlesbrough Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: "Local residents in the North Ormesby area have told us that they are concerned about drugs activity and we are patrolling the area to tackle the issue. "Yesterday, officers were in the right place at the right time and were able to arrest two males on suspicion of drugs offences. Both of these men remain in police custody this morning." https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/men-caught-moving-suspected-cannabis-19171928 Bongme
  8. hi McDonald's tip-off leads to Bradford man's arrest AN anonymous tip-off from a concerned McDonald’s customer resulted in the safe arrest of a suspected drug driver from Bradford who allegedly drove the wrong way down the A64. The call was made at 12.08am yesterday from the fast-food restaurant at Bilbrough Top, Tadcaster Road, on the outskirts of York. It was reported that a man seemed to be under the influence of drugs while ordering food inside the restaurant. He then left and got behind the wheel of a beige Nissan Note car which he drove to the nearby Premier Inn car park. A Roads Policing Group officer made his way to the location and saw the car driving away at 12.40am. When the officer put the blue lights on to pull the vehicle over as it headed towards the westbound carriageway of the A64, the car made off at speed and ended up driving down the wrong way of the road. At 12.45am, members of the Operational Support Unit spotted the car on the A1237 heading towards the Foxwood roundabout. The car was observed going the wrong way round the roundabout and going through red lights. The pursuit was again aborted for safety reasons. Officers placed a stinger device on Shipton Road which deflated the tyres of the Nissan just before 1am. The driver, a 35-year-old man from Bradford, was arrested on suspicion of drug driving after failing a drugs wipe test for cannabis, dangerous driving, failing to stop for the police, being a disqualified driver and having no insurance. It is also believed the car had previously been stolen and was displaying cloned number plates. It has been seized and work is ongoing to locate the owner. Following questioning, the man was released on conditional police bail while enquiries continue. He was transferred into the custody of West Yorkshire Police regarding other alleged criminal matters. https://www.thetelegraphandargus.co.uk/news/18824306.mcdonalds-tip-off-leads-bradford-mans-arrest/ Bongme
  9. hi Heroin, cocaine and cannabis users will be EXEMPT from prosecution for repeated offences under new police scheme Criminals caught in possession of small amounts of heroin, cocaine or cannabis will escape prosecution as long as they are involved in a treatment programme. West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson is backing the £60,000 DIVERT scheme which is intended to 'help break the cycle of crime relating to drug offending'. According to figures released by the PCC, drug related crime currently costs the West Midlands more than £1.4 billion each year. It is recognised that a person put through the criminal justice system costs the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of pounds during their life time. Under the scheme, some 1,500 people will be helped during the 12-month pilot project. Police officers will be able to steer qualifying offenders, who would ordinarily be charged with low-level drugs offences, to drug outreach or education courses. According to a spokesperson for the West Midlands PCC office: 'Evidence suggests that short term prison sentences often lead to the offender committing more crime as opposed to engagement with a diversionary scheme. 'We know that drug habits are often exacerbated in prison and many people in prison first get onto drugs whilst serving a custodial sentence. 1 in 5 heroin users, for example, first use the drug whilst in prison.' A similar scheme operated by Thames Valley Police found that 80 per cent of offenders who engaged with the education and rehabilitation efforts did not reoffend during the next 12 months. West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson, who has led the programme said: 'If we are going to break the cycle of drug related crime, we need to look at new ways to tackle the root cause. 'This new scheme is tried and tested in other parts of the country and has done an excellent job in saving the taxpayer money and stopped individuals become drawn into a life of offending. 'Throughout this 12 month pilot we will continue to monitor the progress of the scheme and how well it is working to help people. We know that successful diversions away from the criminal justice system is always better and cheaper than putting people into prison or even fines which often go unpaid.' Only people who would have been prosecuted for possession rather than possession with intent to supply will be eligible for the scheme. Superintendent Jane Bailey of West Midlands Police said: 'This is a fantastic scheme which will be able to offer help and support to those in need and in some cases, may help save lives. 'Drug users often find themselves on a downward spiral due to their addictions and they often commit crime to fund their habit. 'However, they are also often some of the most vulnerable within our communities, so this project will help them seek help to fight their addictions and divert them away from a life of crime. 'The scheme also offers support to young people, who are involved in drug taking. It will assist by offering early intervention and support to help them stay in education and reach their potential. 'While those who are more heavily involved in crime, or are dealing drugs, will be offered support via our drug referral agencies, we will continue to deal with them properly for criminal matters. 'The wide range of support which will be on offer as part of this scheme will enable people to get the help they need. Ultimately ending the cycle of drug addiction and crime for those who chose to engage.' https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8879559/Heroin-cocaine-cannabis-users-EXEMPT-prosecution.html Bongme
  10. hi Drug dealer grew thousands of pounds worth of cannabis after 'learning how to on YouTube' Police said that the value of the drugs seized from David Warhurst's home was up to £7,500 A drug dealer, who built a cannabis farm after 'learning how to on Youtube ', has avoided jail. David Warhurst, 63, was sentenced at Bolton Crown Court today (October 26) after previously pleading guilty to being concerned in the supply of cannabis, possession of cannabis with intent to supply and producing cannabis. Police raided Warhurst's home in Wareing Street, Tyldesley, on April 30 last year, prosecution barrister Neil Ronan told the court. In one of the spare bedrooms, officers found seven cannabis plants growing, empty snap bags, phones, money boxes, weighing scales, and a safe containing £2,353.52. Downstairs, in the kitchen, police also found more snap bags containing cannabis. According to Mr Ronan, the total value of the cannabis found in Warhurst's home was between £4,350 and £7,500. Warhurst, now of Primrose Street, Tyldesley, was arrested and interviewed by police. In his interview, Warhurst told police that the cannabis farm was his own and he had learnt how to construct it by watching YouTube videos. Warhurst also claimed that the money in the safe was unrelated to selling drugs and had been withdrawn from his bank earlier that day. Mr Ronan told the court that Warhurst has 10 convictions for 21 offences, with the most recent prior to this offence being in 1994. Warhurst's defence barrister Sarah Griffin told the court that she did not wish to make any submissions. Warhurst, who brought a suitcase to court with him, was sentenced to 46 weeks imprisonment, suspended for two years. Honorary Recorder of Bolton Judge Martin Walsh said: "You pleaded guilty at the first opportunity and I give you full credit. "It is clear that you were involved in commercial supply of Class B drugs. "The offence passes the custodial threshold by a significant degree. "I am influenced by the fact you have been out of trouble for over 20 years and you pleaded guilty at the first opportunity." Judge Walsh also issued Warhurst with a four month curfew between 7pm and 7am and ordered him to complete 25 days rehabilitation activity requirement. https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/drug-dealer-grew-thousands-pounds-19169491 Bongme
  11. hi Isle of Man considers new market for cannabis products The production and exportation of hemp and cannabis products could become legal on the Isle of Man under proposed changes to legislation. The Department for Enterprise is seeking public opinion on a suggested update to the Misuse of Drugs Act 1976. Lawrie Hooper MHK said the new rules could develop a "sustainable new sector with economic benefits". The government estimates regulated production could bring in up to £3m per year for the Manx exchequer. The cultivation, importation, exportation, sale and consumption of cannabis is currently prohibited. The proposed changes would allow businesses and investors to apply for a licence to be allowed to grow the plant, produce products derived from it and use it in research. 'Real opportunity' However, it would not pave the way for the legal recreational use of cannabis or medicinal use, despite a 2019 consultation showing 95% of respondents were in favour of growing the plant for medical purposes. Licences could cost between £1,500 and £35,000 per year depending on the type. Giles Day, of the Isle of Man Cannabis Action Network, said the proposals were a "positive step in the right direction". But he said the proposals did not "serve the people of the Isle of Man", and would rather allow "a few people to get rich". The plan did not "address the most pressing need" of providing access for medicinal use, he added. Mr Hooper said there was "a real opportunity" for the island "to start competing with other businesses on a global stage" in the industry. The consultation will close on 19 November. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-isle-of-man-54694317 Bongme
  12. hi Medicinal cannabis: MPs back use for epileptic children CROSS-party MPs are backing families forced to spend thousands of pounds each month to give their epileptic children medical cannabis because they still cannot get it on the NHS. Almost 30 members have signed a letter asking the Health Secretary Matt Hancock to offer ‘emergency funding’ to sufferers across the country. The law was changed in November 2018 to allow access to medical cannabis under prescription, after children such as Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell captured the nation’s heart. But since then very few patients have been given access to the medicine on the NHS, after strict guidance was implemented making the process more difficult. Some NHS Trusts have refused to prescribe full plant cannabis medicine, which contains both THC and CBD, rather offering Epidiolex, which only has CBD and does not give the same results. Families have instead been forced to go private, paying up to £2,500 a month for prescriptions to import the drug, inflicting a massive financial toll. Many children receiving medical cannabis have seen clear results, with some being seizure-free for up to 18 months. Now, the Department for Health has said they will not move forward based on this evidence, known as an ‘observational study’, instead saying randomised controlled clinical trials must take place before the NHS will roll it out. This process could take years, leaving families with the crippling cost in the meantime. In Northern Ireland Billy Caldwell was last week awarded a lifelong medical cannabis prescription on the NHS. Some 27 MPs have now signed a letter asking Matt Hancock to help pay for the drug to ensure parity with Belfast. Co-chair of the APPG on Medical Cannabis Mike Penning wrote in the letter to Mr Hancock: “Paying privately costs the families thousands of pounds a month. We imagine that your decision would have been based on internal advice that such a move was not possible. “However, we are aware that the Health & Social Care of Northern Ireland appear to have found a way to grant funding of this kind for a high-profile case there. We hope you will agree that if such a move is possible in one part of the United Kingdom, it ought to be possible in the other nations too.” Murray Gray, 8, from Edinburgh, was diagnosed with an extreme form of epilepsy in 2017 and caused him to have fits multiple times each day, almost costing him his life. They were given legal permission to buy drugs Bedrolyte and Bedica from abroad in 2018, but it is costing his family £1,400 each month His mother Karen, 46, said: “There is clear evidence that these drugs work, Murray has been completely seizure free for 17 months. “The difference is unbelievable, he goes to school full time now, he no longer needs a wheelchair, he doesn’t need to wear a helmet, he is running around like every child should. “There shouldn’t need to be a trial to test if Murray should get it, we know it helps him.” Although family and friends have been generous in helping support families across the country, Covid-19 has put a stop to any large scale fundraising, increasing the pressure. Elaine Levy, from Mill Hill, north London, has sold her house to continue paying for her adult daughter Fallon’s treatment, which costs £2,200 a month. Fallon, 26, started taking the same drugs in 2018, and has seen a dramatic drop in the number of seizures she has. “The drugs she was on before made Fallon dopey, like she was stoned. Once she started taking this she began to wake up, her IQ has gone up, we don’t need to cut her food any more, and she can walk and talk. She is like a different person. “I don’t like asking for money, it isn’t in my nature, but family and friends have been so generous. In the end I sold my house as I just couldn’t see how we were going to pay for it. “This is about cost. My doctor has even confirmed to me that if it was £5 a bottle there would be no problem. The idea that it is about safety is just smoke and mirrors.” The Government claims there is little evidence for medical cannabis, and that further tests must be done to ensure it is safe enough to provide on the NHS. Edward Argar, minister for health and social care, said: “The best course of action is to develop evidence via safe and robust clinical trials supported by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR). “A programme of two randomised controlled clinical trials are being developed by the NIHR. These trials will be critical in ensuring that evidence for cannabis-based medicinal products can be developed to plan future National Health Service commissioning decisions for the many hundreds of patients in the United Kingdom with refractory epilepsy. Industry also needs to step up and invest in robust clinical trials to improve understanding of how patients might benefit from these products.” https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/1351986/medicinal-cannabis-nhs-epileptic-children 3 Comments Bongme
  13. hi Burglar runs from police but leads them to £170,000 cannabis factory in Wisbech Officers found 355 plants across 11 rooms A burglar who decided to run from police ended up leading them to a cannabis factory worth £170,000. Over the summer a member of the public phoned police about a suspected burglary in process, which led to the arrest of 21-year-old James Law, and the discovery of a cannabis factory consisting of 355 plants spanning 11 rooms. Officers were sent to Churchill Road in Wisbech, Fenland, after the call came in at around 1.40am on August 23. When they arrived, they found Law and a second man running from the house with what was believed to be cannabis plants. After a short foot chase, both men were arrested on suspicion of burglary. The pair were later charged with burglary, and Law, of no fixed address, was also charged with a further two burglaries in Clipston Walk and Flore Close, in Peterborough in July. He was also charged with the theft of a Mercedes, driving without a licence and driving without insurance. Law was already on court bail after previously being charged with conveying a list A article, namely cannabis, into prison earlier in the year. He admitted the offences and was sentenced to a total of two years and six months in prison at Peterborough Crown Court on Tuesday, October 20. Law was also disqualified from driving for 27 months. DC Tessa Munro, from the Acquisitive Crime Team, said: “Thanks to information received by a member of the public we were able to catch Law in the act. "I would strongly urge people to report any suspicions to us as they are the eyes and ears of our communities when we can’t be everywhere.” The 20-year-old man charged alongside Law awaits trial for two counts of burglary. https://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/news/local-news/burglar-police-cannabis-factory-wisbech-19165637 Bongme
  14. hi nside huge cannabis factory in Grimsby where thousands of plants were discovered The grow is now being dismantled and the power supply made safe A huge cannabis factory uncovered in a Grimsby building contained thousands of plants as well as large amounts of growing equipment. The operation near Freeman Street uncovered three floors of the building and was discovered when officers raided the building near The Regal on Friday, October 23. The grow, which is believed to be one of the biggest uncovered in North East Lincolnshire, is now being dismantled as police make the building safe. No one has been arrested by police in connection with it yet. Pictures have emerged of the building's power supply, with dozens of wires running upstairs. Electrical contractors took several days to make the power supply safe after police found the grow at the junction with Garibaldi Street. The investigation into the Freeman Street factory is ongoing. A spokesman for Humberside Police said: "On Friday, October 23, officers conducted a drugs warrant at a property on the junction of Freeman Street with Garibaldi Street in Grimsby. "On entry thousands of cannabis plants and growing equipment were discovered on three floors of the property. "Our officers are gathering evidence and dismantling the grow and the electricity supply is being made safe. No one has been arrested in connection with the investigation at this time and our enquiries are ongoing. https://www.grimsbytelegraph.co.uk/news/grimsby-news/inside-huge-cannabis-factory-grimsby-4641204 Bongme
  15. hi '20 joints a day' Falkirk cannabis dealer caught with four-figure drug haul A cannabis dealer caught with almost £3000 worth of the drug claimed the haul was for personal use and “social supply”. Robert Lang, Flat 6, 19 Symington Drive, Falkirk, admitted possessing a quantity of the class B substance with intent to supply to another or others at his home on October 25, 2019. The 37-year-old appeared at Falkirk Sheriff Court on Thursday having been busted by a police raid, during which several items were seized. Procurator fiscal depute Sarah Smith said officers had been alerted to a “disturbance” at the property. She continued: “On being afforded access by the accused, officers detected a strong smell of cannabis and there was a large bag of what looked like a herbal substance. “He advised it was cannabis for professional use and it was his. However, there were two others in the property. “A warrant was granted and a number of items were seized from within.” Police recovered bags containing 386 grams of cannabis with a combined estimated street value of £2857 from Lang’s home. Defence solicitor Simon Hutchison told the court his client had admitted being concerned in the “social supply” of the drug to his “partner and her best friend”. He added: “All three were buying and using together. “He thinks he was using 20 joints a day and one of the others had an even higher habit. Mr Hutchison told Sheriff Derek Livingston his client had not committed a criminal offence for 12 years. Lang was ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid work within 12 months as an alternative to custody. https://www.falkirkherald.co.uk/news/crime/20-joints-day-falkirk-cannabis-dealer-caught-four-figure-drug-haul-3013709 Bongme
  16. hi How to spot a cannabis factory in your area - the tell-tale signs revealed They include strong smells, excessive security and high levels of condensation Cannabis was once a drug that would be imported from far-flung climes to the UK but that has not been the case for a very long time. After hydroponic technology - a method of growing plants in water rich in mineral nutrients instead of soil - was developed to aid food production it wasn’t long before criminals realised it could be used to successfully grow cannabis in confined and easily hidden spaces. And so the illegal cannabis farm or cannabis factory was born. Initially empty industrial units were favoured locations for those looking to make a quick buck from the seemingly insatiable demand for cannabis in the UK. But over time production moved into residential properties - and not just large country houses with plenty of space - but small semi-detached and terraced houses in suburban streets. The phenomenon has been with us for quite some time now and shows no sign of going away. Eight years ago the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) spoke of the alarming rise in the number of UK cannabis factories. In 2012 an Acpo report said the rise was being fuelled by the increasing involvement of organised crime groups, who saw it as a “low-risk and highly profitable criminal business”. Since then cannabis factories have continued to proliferate and barely a week goes by without news of a raid on one in the West Midlands or Warwickshire. In August this year West Midlands Police raided an industrial premises in West Bromwich where they discovered thousands of plants - a crop with an estimated street value of more than £3m. Last week a massive cannabis factory was uncovered inside a former nightclub in Coventry city centre. Officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA) raided the venue in Trinity Street on Thursday (October 15), smashing through reinforced doors to gain access into the former club. Inside, some 1,000 cannabis plants were discovered, spread out over three floors. According to the NCA, the value of the grow was an estimated £1 million and has been described as "one of the largest grows ever uncovered by the NCA". Just this week Warwickshire Police revealed they had raided a property in Leamington and seized 239 plants. In the wake of the Leamington raid the force revealed details of how people can spot a cannabis factory in their area. The guide is as follows. How to spot the signs of cannabis being grown at a property Strong, sickly smells It may sound obvious, but most cannabis grows are discovered by passers-by or keen-nosed residents catching a whiff of the drug’s familiar smell. A cannabis crop takes about three months to grow and in the final weeks, the plants stink. Crimestoppers has previously sent out cannabis-farm scratch-and-sniff cards to more than 200,000 homes in the UK to help home-owners tell if they live close to a budding farm. Windows are constantly covered Do your neighbours have the curtains drawn all day long? It might make it look like the house is unoccupied, but having windows blocked up with panelling or sheeting would suggest there’s something they don’t want you to see. This could be a sign that there are many budding plants inside soaking up bright artificial light. Excessive security Growers live in constant fear that their home grown farms will be discovered by police, landlords or rival drug dealers. If there are padlocks on the gates, massive grilles and double and triple locks on the doors, that should raise eyebrows – especially if the street is relatively safe. On bigger, high value farms, portcullises, bars on the windows and even CCTV cameras can be evident. Footage below of a huge cannabis factory found in Coventry High levels of condensation Are the windows always misted up? From the inside, 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 inside having been turned into a makeshift greenhouse. For the best plant growth, cannabis needs an atmosphere similar to a greenhouse, and this can cause a lot of condensation. Lots of visitors - and at unsociable hours Frequent and varied visitors to a property, often at unusual times, could mean you just have a popular neighbour with a big family. But if unfamiliar faces are turning up next door day and night, it might be a sign that there’s something more sinister going on. One thing to watch for is lots of new faces coming knocking. Rocketing electricity bills The lights, dehumidifiers, hydroponic systems and heaters take a lot of electricity. Many farms have been found where drugs gangs have hacked into the electricity wires before the meter to that individual house, and so bypassed having to pay for the electricity. If you are a landlord who gets a copy of the bill, has it dropped or gone up suddenly? If so, your neighbourhood growers could have tapped into your supply and are charging you to power their drug operation. You should contact your supplier and the police immediately. What happens when it snows? Cannabis factories produce a lot of heat, which can cause tell-tale 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. Bright lights day and night It’s strange for anyone to need unusually bright lights on 24 hours a day. 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. 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 grow. https://www.coventrytelegraph.net/news/local-news/how-spot-cannabis-factory-your-19144199 Photos and Vid Bongme
  17. hi Husband punches wife in face during row over whether to spend £20 on food or cannabis They've been married for 10 years Violent Ian Burgess punched his wife in the face - because she didn’t want him to buy drugs. The 48-year-old hit the victim at their Normacot home after an argument started while they watched TV. Magistrates at North Staffordshire Justice Centre heard Burgess then refused to let her go to hospital to have her injuries checked and brandished a kitchen knife. Prosecutor Sara Beddow said: “The parties have been married for 10 years. On July 10 the injured party and the defendant were at home, sitting on the sofa, watching television. “An argument started. He wanted to spend £20 on cannabis. She said the money was needed for food and electricity. “He became aggressive. He shouted, ‘This is all your fault’, before putting his hands over her face. He then punched her in the face. Contact was made with her eye. “It seems she wanted to go to hospital but he said she could not go. He said, ‘How are you going to explain it?’ At one point he selected a knife from the kitchen and motioned towards her and himself.” The victim called police the following morning. When confronted by police, he said, ‘I admit it, I slapped her’. In his police interview he admitted punching her and grabbing hold of her. Burgess, of Argyll Road, Normacot, pleaded guilty to assault. The victim wrote a letter to magistrates that said she believed the relationship was over when the incident happened. But she now thinks there could be a chance they would get back together in the future. She said she did not want Burgess to go to prison but hoped he would get counselling. Joanne Corbett, mitigating, said: “Mr Burgess wants to extend his remorse to the court for his behaviour on the night in question.” Magistrates handed Burgess a 24-month community order with a 15-day rehabilitation activity requirement and 200 hours unpaid work. He must also undertake the Building Better Relationships programme with the probation service. Magistrates ordered him to pay £135 court costs and a £95 victim surcharge. https://www.stokesentinel.co.uk/news/stoke-on-trent-news/husband-punches-wife-face-during-4614235 Bongme
  18. hi Huge Kingstanding cannabis farm worth £260k raided as cops find 'trafficking victim' Police uncovered and seized 258 plants from the property in Witton Lodge Road Police have busted a huge cannabis farm worth hundreds of thousands of pounds inside a Birmingham property. Officers uncovered a factory worth almost £260,000 inside an address in Witton Lodge Road, Kingstanding on Friday (October 23). A total of 258 plants were counted and seized as officers executed the drugs warrant in the early hours of the morning. As police entered, a 19-year-old man from Vietnam was found with the 'full cannabis set up' and arrested for cultivation. He was released without charge as he's being treated as a 'potential trafficking victim', the force said. A spokesman for West Midlands Police said: "This was a warrant conducted at the address in the early hours of this morning. "Upon entering a male was found and arrested for cultivation and a full cannabis setup (258 Plants were counted and seized). "It was a 19-year-old man from Vietnam. He will be referred to immigration colleagues as suspicion he is in the UK illegally." Officers from the organised crime team shared an image which shows rows of cannabis plants lined up inside a room. The premises were made safe following the raid, they said. The team wrote to Twitter: "@Gangs_WMP have this morning executed a warrant in Witton Lodge Road where a large Cannabis Farm was recovered. "One male has been arrested and the premises are being made safe. "Organised crime revenue from Cannabis is significant & will be targeted by West Midlands Police and Kingstanding Police." https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/huge-kingstanding-cannabis-farm-worth-19159981 Bongme
  19. hi Police bust cannabis farm in a barn in Wensleydale after locals report 'strange comings and goings' A barn in Wensleydale that had been converted into a cannabis farm was discovered thanks to a tip-off from local residents. Suspicious activity including large numbers of vehicles coming and going had been reported at the disused barn on farmland in Hunton, between Leyburn and Bedale. On October 21, police visited the barn and found a large-scale cannabis 'grow' in the early stages of cultivation. There was a 'well-organised' hydroponics system, electricity meters had been bypassed and a large quantity of cannabis plants were found. Inspector Mark Gee said from North Yorkshire Police said: “We’re very grateful to the local community who reported their concerns and as a result we were able to act quickly and dismantle this operation. “Often the people involved in the actual cultivation and set-up on the ground are being exploited by organised crime groups, so putting a stop to these types of operations has a far wider reaching impact than simply stopping drugs from becoming available in our communities. “Everyone can play their part by remaining vigilant and reporting any suspicious behaviour to the police so that we can take action.” No arrests have been made. https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/crime/police-bust-cannabis-farm-barn-wensleydale-after-locals-report-strange-comings-and-goings-3013707 Bongme
  20. hi Medicinal cannabis: campaigners call on Matt Hancock to step in and fix ‘broken policy’ The MS Society said it hoped Billy Caldwell’s case would open the door for the 10,000 people with MS in the UK who could benefit from cannabis-based medicinal products Health Secretary Matt Hancock should step in and ensure severely ill children can access medicinal cannabis on the NHS, which campaigners say is still being denied to them two years after the treatment was legalised. It follows the landmark decision this week over teenager Billy Caldwell who became the first patient to receive a lifelong NHS prescription for medicinal cannabis to treat his severe epilepsy – but only following years of campaigning by his mother, Charlotte. The 15-year-old’s first batch of medicine, prescribed by a private doctor but funded by the health service in Northern Ireland, will arrive on 1 November. Peter Carroll, director of the End Our Pain campaign group, said: “It’s obviously great news for Billy and his family and everyone should be pleased for them. Yet the system remains totally log-jammed and it’s shattering for everyone else who still can’t get medicinal cannabis on the NHS. “I find it totally shocking that the law can be changed for a reason – as demonstrated in the cases of Billy and Alfie Dingley – and then to my knowledge there hasn’t been a single other NHS prescription for whole plant medical cannabis and I don’t understand it. Was the law changed for a reason or not? “If it was changed because there was scientific evidence it worked then surely we should be given relief to the people who are having to pay thousands of pounds a month to pay privately to help their very sick children. I’m devastated for those families. Is this now a postcode lottery? Does everyone have to go to court to get it? “If they can do it in Northern Ireland why can they not do it for the rest of the UK? The policy is not working and so many sick children are missing out. Billy’s case has to be a catalyst for change. Changing the law was a brilliant thing to do but the policy of medicinal cannabis in the UK has failed and Matt Hancock has to intervene.” The MS Society said it hoped the case would open the door for the 10,000 people with MS in the UK who could benefit from cannabis-based medicinal products. Jonathan Blades, head of campaigns and external relations at the charity, said: “But the sad reality is that every time we have expected to make positive movement toward people having access, it has been at a glacial pace. MS is relentless, painful and disabling, and evidence shows cannabis-based treatments could help people with MS get relief from pain and spasms when other treatments haven’t worked for them. “Yet it has been almost two years since the law changes around medical cannabis, and we know no one with MS who has access on the NHS, with the exception of Sativex. We need a cross-government plan on cannabis-based medicinal products to encourage innovative research, educate health professionals, and give people with MS access to these treatments. It shouldn’t be illegal to get the symptom relief you need.” In the short-term, End Our Pain wants Mr Hancock to use public money to pay for private prescriptions for the sickest children, such as those with severe epilepsy. The group also says it was “devastated” after the Government rejected proposals in a NHS-led review into barriers to accessing medicinal cannabis products in the health service, which called for “an appropriate alternative study” to gather evidence of the treatment’s benefits. In a written parliamentary response to Sir Mike Penning this week, health minister Edward Argar said: “The best course of action is to develop evidence via safe and robust clinical trials supported by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR). A programme of two randomised controlled clinical trial are being developed by the NIHR. These trials will be critical in ensuring that evidence for cannabis-based medicinal products can be developed to plan future National Health Service commissioning decisions for the many hundreds of patients in the United Kingdom with refractory epilepsy.” Mr Carroll said: “That sort of trial will take years and may never happen. It is shocking. If the public understood what’s going on here they would be dumbfounded. We’re happy to pump children full of anti-epileptic drugs, which have powerful side effects, but when parents produce evidence that using a natural product, which we can now use due to the law change, they are turned down and can’t get a prescription. How does that work?” The Department of Health and Social Care was approached for comment. https://inews.co.uk/news/health/medicinal-cannabis-campaigners-call-matt-hancock-step-in-billy-caldwell-736088 Bongme
  21. hi Huge cannabis factory uncovered near former Freeman Street cinema Police are continuing to work at the scene to make it safe for further investigation A suspected cannabis factory has been discovered by police in a building close to the former cinema on Grimsby's Freeman Street. Police have secured the building and are working with specialist teams to make the building safe for investigation as much of the building is unlit and unsafe to enter. It is believed that the growing equipment has been housed in the former arcade next door to The Regal. An eyewitness described police carrying equipment into the building as they sought to make the scene safe for further investigation by Scenes of Crime officers. It is believed that large areas of the building remain hazardous and the investigation is likely to be ongoing over the weekend as electrical contractors work on the scene. The growing equipment is thought to be located throughout three to four stories of the building showing the extent of the operation that had been raided. Humberside Police has been cracking down on cannabis growers in the town with its ongoing Operation Galaxy iniative. Most recently the police have undertaken a week of intensive action against County Lines gangs in northern Lincolnshire which led to seven people being arrested, a large cannabis factory being discovered and a surge in intelligence from the public. The investigation on Freeman Street is ongoing. Humberside Police have been contacted for comment. https://www.grimsbytelegraph.co.uk/news/grimsby-news/huge-cannabis-factory-uncovered-near-4636829 Bongme
  22. hi Medicinal cannabis prices to be slashed as company rolls out bombshell new products Medical marijuana is legal in the UK, but private prescriptions can cost several hundred pounds a month if users can't get the drug on the NHS. EMMAC, an independent cannabis company, may have a solution A cannabis company has vowed to roll out medical marijuana at a price that "hasn't been possible" until now. Back in 2018, weed became legal to patients in the UK on NHS prescription in the wake of mounting pressure on the government. Earlier this year, access to cannabis was also eased during the pandemic and users were able to deliveries through the post. However, private prescriptions can cost several hundred pounds a month if users can’t get the drug on the NHS. Others are forced to seek it out illegally from dealers. EMMAC, Europe’s largest independent cannabis company, says medical cannabis will now be more affordable for patients in the UK. Rokshaw Laboratories, a lab based in Sunderland, received the “Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient” of medical cannabis earlier this month. The plant is grown in Portugal and the THC is extracted in Spain, the BBC reported. It is then exported to the UK laboratory where it is turned into cannabis oil. Co-founder and managing director Ed McDermott said in a statement: “This is a ground-breaking moment for the UK medical cannabis industry. “EMMAC’s complete control of our supply chain, from cultivation and extraction to manufacture and distribution, allows us to offer a consistent, reliable and high-quality product in the UK at a price point that has hitherto not been possible. “Since our inception, EMMAC has sought to address the challenges faced by patients and clinicians in the UK, including availability of product and accessibility of price, as identified in the 2019 NHS England report: Barriers to accessing cannabis-based products for medicinal use on NHS prescription. “As always, we remain committed to working closely with the public and private healthcare sectors to help solve these barriers to access of cannabis-based medicines.” Because EMMAC oversees cultivation, extraction, production and distribution, the company is able to cut cannabis prices. CEO Antonio Costanzo said it can offer “consistency of product and price to clinicians and patients across Europe in need of the highest-quality medical cannabis without excessive costs”. Earlier this month, campaigners called on the government to legalise weed during lockdown. With Brits facing pub curfews and months of misery, the pro-dope brigade are urging the UK government to change the law. They claim smoking the reefer can help those suffering from anxiety and mental health issues heightened by the Covid-19 pandemic. But critics say the drug is often actually more damaging to people's mental health and are keen for it to keep its illegal status. https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/medicinal-cannabis-prices-slashed-company-22891660 Bongme
  23. hi Cannabis pain insights and kidney disease discoveries: News from the College Here’s a batch of fresh news and announcements from across Imperial. Cannabis compound blocks pain pathway Advocates of cannabis have long cited the drug’s benefits in pain management. Now, new research from Imperial could help to explain these effects, by showing how one of the key active compounds, cannabidiol (CBD), acts on nerve cells. A team led by Mikael Sodergren found that rat neurons cultured in the lab could be made less sensitive to capsaicin – the compound which gives chilies their heat. They found CBD blocked pain signalling pathways, with treated nerve cells seeing an influx of calcium and reduced levels of cAMP (a key signalling molecule in pain pathway), compared to untreated neurons. According to the researchers, these findings shine a light on how cannabis compounds directly act on neurons, and may explain the therapeutic effect of CBD in patients with acute and chronic pain. Read the full paper in the Journal of Pain Research: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7494392/ https://www.imperial.ac.uk/news/207093/cannabis-pain-insights-kidney-disease-discoveries/ Bongme
  24. hi Drug dealer caught with £16k of cannabis told cops it was 'gifted to him by a school friend' Richard Ashworth was found with the drugs and a money counter after police officers swooped on an address in Edinburgh. A drug dealer caught with £16,000 of cannabis in a police raid told cops the haul was “gifted to him by a school friend”. Richard Ashworth, 46, was snared with the large stash of the Class B drug after officers executed a search warrant at an Edinburgh flat. Officers from Police Scotland also discovered a money counting machine during the swoop on the address. Ashworth appeared at the city’s sheriff court on Thursday, October 22, and admitted being concerned in the supply of drugs on June 18 last year. Fiscal depute Anna Robertson said the raid recovered 1627g of herbal cannabis in vacuum bags along with a set of scales. She said the drugs had a value of £16,000 if peddled in £10 deals, or £12,000 if sold in bulk. Ms Robertson said Ashworth “admitted ownership” of the drugs in a police interview and said it was “gifted to him by a school friend”. he added: “He provided no explanation for the money counting machine.” The solicitor said first offender Ashworth was “holding” the cannabis, which had been “obtained from a friend”, although he admitted the supply charge. Sheriff Thomas Welsh QC deferred sentence on Ashworth, of the city’s Wester Hailes area, until December for reports. https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/drug-dealer-caught-16k-cannabis-22888974 Bongme
  25. hi More than 50 cannabis farms found in Bolton in 3 years as police crack down on drug gangs A TOTAL of 51 cannabis farms have been found in Bolton in the last three years – as police crack down on gangs exploiting vulnerable adults and children to cultivate drugs. Greater Manchester Police (GMP) figures reveal there were 16 cannabis farms discovered in the town from September 2019 to August this year. Eighteen cannabis farms in the borough came to GMP's attention in the 12 months before then and 17 were found in 2017/18. The ward with the highest number of cannabis farms found in the three-year period was Farnworth (10), followed by the town centre and Horwich (both with seven). Earlier this month we reported that increasing numbers of illegal immigrants are being trafficked to Bolton by criminal gangs who use them to act as gardeners in cannabis farms. They are lured to the UK from impoverished countries with the promise of work in the construction industry, many find the dream of being able to provide for their families ends behind prison bars. And GMP is aware of how gangs are taking advantage of vulnerable adults and children to make their ill-gotten gains. Detective Sergeant Jamie Pearson, of GMP's organised crime coordination unit, said: "Programme Challenger is a multi-partner approach to tackling serious organised crime in Greater Manchester. "We have a dedicated team within GMP, who work alongside partner agencies to gather information and intelligence, and to accurately map organised crime groups, and their criminal activity, including the threats they pose to our local communities. "Within the work of Programme Challenger, we continue to run operations to identify and disrupt drug dealing, and the exploitation of both vulnerable adults and children. "Intel informs the work we carry out, and we continue to adapt our strategies based on the information we have, as we disrupt the criminal activity, prevent profits being further invested into serious crime, and protect those at risk. “Protecting the vulnerable members of our communities is key, and as part of this work, we look to prevent those that have been subject to exploitation through a host of multiagency initiatives which also fall under Programme Challenger. "The work ensures all victims of exploitation are supported throughout the whole process and beyond, and we will continue to bring perpetrators to justice." Information from residents about anything suspicions they see or hear is vital to officers, police say. Det Sgt Pearson said: "One of our most powerful weapons in the fight against drugs and exploitation is the information we receive from our communities; so if you suspect drug cultivation and supply in your area, or believe a child or vulnerable adult to be at risk criminal exploitation, then please contact police immediately. "With the continued help of the public, we can eliminate illegal drugs from our streets and reduce the risk of vulnerable people being drawn into criminality. "I would also like to take this opportunity to encourage victims of criminal exploitation to come forward and report to us, and know you will be supported." https://www.theboltonnews.co.uk/news/18816513.50-cannabis-farms-found-bolton-3-years-police-crack-drug-gangs/ Bongme