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  1. hi Cops uncover £1m cannabis farm during Port Glasgow factory raid Cops have uncovered £1m worth of cannabis during a drugs factory raid in Port Glasgow. More than 600 cannabis plants were seized from the disused lot on Muirsheil road after a member of the public reported a strong smelling odour coming from the building. Inspector Julie MacDonald said police are now hunting for the producers behind the operation. She said: “We received reports of a strong smell from the premises and officers attended. “Entry was gained and a large-scale cannabis cultivation with an estimated street value of £985,408 was seized from the property.” She added: “This recovery originated from an observant member of the public cooming to us with information that allowed us to act. It shows how important information from the general public can be and I would urge anyone who hears, sees or notices anything they consider suspicious to get in touch with police.” https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/news/scottish-news/4507641/cannabis-one-million-port-glasgow-raid/ Vid On Link Bongme
  2. hi Christian company forced to rebrand after CBD name attracts cannabis fans Independent Christian Book Distributors tire of fending off people looking for infused sweets and essential oils A Christian publishing company has been forced to change its name from CBD after it was besieged with interest from people who thought they were selling cannabis products. Christian Book Distributors have been known as CBD for decades, but in recent years the initials have become more familiar standing for cannabidiol, a non-hallucinatory substance derived from the cannabis plant. The CBD firm has now rebranded itself as Christianbook, after tiring of constantly fending off approaches from people less interested in Bible and hymnbooks and more in cannabis-infused sweets, essential oils and medical treatments. “A person may call up and say, ‘Hey, I’m looking for my order,’” Ray Hendrickson, the chief executive of the family-owned company, told the New York Times. “It’s like, ‘What did you order? Oh, I ordered gummies.’ You don’t have the right company.” Mr Hendrickson founded what is now Christianbook 40 years ago with his brother, Stephen, out of their parents’ home. It has now grown into one of the world’s biggest distributors of Christian resources and employs 600 people to help sell books, DVDs, home-school products and music to the faithful. The firm owns the website www.cbd.com, but when that is searched for online the results are instead dominated by cannabis. Even Mr Hendrickson’s own mother has found the CBD initial confusing. “I was driving my mum down the road recently,” he told the New York Times. “She saw a sign that said ‘CBD sold here.’ I was like, ‘No, mum. That’s not us.’” Kraig Fox, chief executive of High Times, a monthly cannabis magazine, told the newspaper: “With the rapid rise of CBD and cannabis as legitimate industries, there is bound to be confusion in the marketplace. “Especially in the online environment, some companies may actually see an increase in clicks as result of search engine algorithms or consumer misunderstanding, which may not actually be a bad thing. Others may see this as unwanted attention.” Although CBD remains technically illegal under federal law in the US, it has become increasingly popular in sweets, lotions, sprays and even coffee. Unlike THC, the active ingredient in cannabis which makes its users high, CBD is non-intoxicating and instead has some medicinal effects in treating seizures. It is now legally available in 11 states and can even be bought in high street chemist chains in some parts of America. CBD can also be lawfully bought in the UK and has never been scheduled as an illegal drug, provided it is pure and contains no THC. Separately, some medical treatments derived from cannabis which do contain some THC can no be prescribed by specialist doctors after Sajid Javid, the home secretary, relaxed the regulations last year. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/cbd-cannabis-christian-book-distributors-weed-marijuana-a9013666.html Bongme
  3. hi Insta King, Dan Bilzerian tries to dominate the cannabis market in the U.K. The Instagram star, Dan Bilzerian boasts of a wealthy lifestyle with multiple businesses running successfully that fuel his passions and interests. Popularly known for his lavish lifestyle and girlfriends, he is quite a sensation on the Internet with a following of more than 27.5 million followers on Instagram. The wealthy, muscular and perma tanner American has been dubbed the King of Instagram for showcasing his life that is filled to the brim with extravagant parties, yachts, fast cars, adventure sports and guns while constantly surrounded by a posse of near-naked, attractive women. Currently, he is in the UK trying to enter the nascent cannabis market with his brand Ignite. The company is already well-established in the US and Canada, selling vaping liquids and e-cigs, lip balms and edible drops which contain a hemp extract known as cannabidiol or CBD. The US federal government legalized the compound in December 2018 under the Farm Bill Act by removing it from the list of Controlled Substances. Since then CBD has been trending product in the consumer market with companies rushing to try and exploit of what is envisioned to become a booming commercial market in the coming years. While recreational use of marijuana remains illegal in most parts of the world, CBD is a non-psychoactive compound which means it can’t get the user high. It is legal to sell CBD in the UK, given that companies do not market their products with claims about medical benefits and it contains no more than 0.2% of THC, the compound which gets people high. Industry experts evaluate Ignite’s current value at around £90m which implies that it has a great potential to dominate a market that is still at an early stage. But the firm’s success has filled Carly Barton, a campaigner for people who use cannabis for medicinal purposes, with dread. She even pulled out of a conference after discovering that Bilzerian was speaking at it. Barton comes with a strong opinion saying that the industry is at its initial stage and people now have the freedom to shape the foundational layer on which the coming generations or brands would work. But to let people walk in with a parade of girls around products seems an inappropriate manner to market products or grow as a business, especially with a delicate substance as the CBD. The major form of marketing for Ignite is done via Bilzerian’s personal social media feeds where he promotes his brand’s products. His feed entails posts which evoke a bygone era of the 1960s, where women didn’t have the right to equality, freedom or be liberal as they do now. To see a massive following of 27.5 million people despite the intimidating pictures and videos is quite surprising. Not many people support Bilzerian’s notions and ideologies. Just like some famous superhero characters, Bilzerian lives alone in a palatial mansion, maintains a clean shaved body throughout the year to boast his bulky muscles and takes regular stem cell injections to treat his sports injuries. However, contradicting to his online image, he is surprisingly low key with a subtle tone of language. His calm features were quite visible at the extravagant launch party of Ignite. Reported to have cost £500,000, the party was majorly dominated by young, beautiful women taking rounds among industry workers. Bilzerian is relatively open when it comes to his style of promoting products or even his lifestyle. The young ladies are a part of an arrangement that he makes no secret of. In 2018, he ran a nationwide U.S. competition offering $100,000 year-long contracts to 10 women who would go on to represent the brand. Bilzerian says that he hires models for marketing his products. To him it is an important thing to have attractive women who are appealing to most men on the marketing platform. His former girlfriend has now become Ignite’s leading sales person. He argues that leveraging the beauty of young women to attract men is the right kind of advertising for his brand, especially for his social media following that consists of an overwhelming majority of males aged between 18 to 35. Bilzerian seems to be less forthcoming on whether his particular vision of masculinity and manhood is the ideal one. Instead he argues that he doesn’t pressurize anyone to do anything for him, it’s up to individual people to take the job or to buy the product. Currently, there are no regulatory reforms or frameworks that can control and stabilize the cannabis industry, says the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis (CMC). According to CMC, the CBD market in the U.K. is currently valued at £300m a year. It is estimated to skyrocket to £1bn by 2025. https://thecannabisradar.com/bilzerian-dominate-cannabis-market/1922/ Bongme
  4. hi Beyonce's dad Matthew Knowles' bizarre career change as he swaps music for marijuana Beyonce's father Matthew Knowles has made a baffling change in career by moving in to the cannabis business Mirror Beyonce's dad Matthew Knowles has revealed his bizarre new career move as he switches one kind of greatest hits for another. former manager of superstar has partnered with Bangi Inc which buys and rents real estate for weed farms. He recently told the New York Post Page Six, that despite smoking the drug for "medicinal reasons", the company doesn't actually handle the marijuana itself, just leases the land to the growers. "I'm a marketing guy," he explained. I like to think outside the box. I like to be on the beginning of a trend and not at the end of it. We are buying land. We'll lease it back to the growers, the dispensaries, the extraction companies." He seems to be following in the footsteps of his son in-law, Jay Z, who has joined cannabis company Caliva as chief brand strategist. "We want to create something amazing, have fun in the process, do good and bring people along the way," Jay Z said in a statement about his latest venture. When Knowles was asked if the pair might work together, he responded: "It's way to early to be having that conversation." Knowles used to manage his daughter Beyonce and her former group Destiny's Child until she fired him in 2011 after a string of legal issues between the two. Beyonce has always maintained that she has a good relationship with her father and that it has improved since they stopped working together. She told host Oprah Winfrey in a 2013 interview that although separating from her father was "difficult," they both "knew it was time". In October 2015, Knowles released his first book, The DNA Of Achievers: 10 Traits of Highly Successful Professionals. https://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/beyonces-dad-matthew-knowles-bizarre-18439083 Bongme
  5. hi The fight against Coventry's cannabis factories and the criminals who profit Police are battling on a daily basis to stem the tide of illegal cannabis farms in cities such as Coventry. The latest cannabis find in the city saw cops seize over £200,000 worth of plants in a drugs raid on a house on Oliver Street in Foleshill. It is one of a number of successful raids so far this year as criminals continue to see growing and selling the class B drug as a huge money-spinner. Therefore, West Midlands Police concentrates a vast amount of time and resources to the battle, which sees them, on average, making three cannabis busts each and every day. CoventryLive has chatted with Sergeant Mike Hall, supervisor of the force's cannabis disposal team, about the ongoing fight, the large amounts of money criminals really make and saving people trafficked in to a world of slavery. How big is the problem of cannabis? Sgt Hall said: "We are routinely at three cannabis scenes a day. We cover the whole force area and there's quite a lot of it out there. "Most of what we do is reactive, especially in Coventry. It comes from information coming in from members of the public, as they live among it and they lead us to it. "One phone call isn't really going to do it, as we have checks and balances to make to ensure that it isn't that you don't like your neighbour and want to dob them in." Sgt Hall said that cannabis set-ups often get brought to their attention by the fire service, if the property involved has caught fire, or from utility companies who make a discovery. Have the tactics of criminals changed to tried and avoid detection? "We've seen a move away from large-scale industrial premises with 1,000 plants inside and might instead get five with 200 plants each," explained Sgt Hall. "For organised crime groups they are essentially a way to create money. Just last week we did £6million on cannabis - two jobs with over 2,500 plants. "Our job is to interrupt that fund build as we take away their cost to set up, which can be up to £25,000, and then take away their future profits." Some cases see people trafficked in to the UK to tend to the plants, while the masterminds stay hidden - is it annoying not to catch the real criminals behind it? Sgt Hall told CoventryLive: "It's a bonus if we can emancipate someone and free them from slavery. "You get some people who are clearly victims and you get some that aren't. "It's something we are very aware of and do look out for that sort of thing. If we can get a win that way that's more to us than a conviction against a gardener for cultivation of cannabis. "It is nicer to get somebody further up the chain, but we can often do that through the investigation." What's the biggest find you've been involved with? Sgt Hall has been in his role with West Midlands Police for 10 years and during that time the biggest cannabis bust he was part of was right here in Coventry. In 2011, a complex operation described by police as one of the “most professional” they have ever seen was found in an industrial unit in Sandy Lane, Radford. Police say almost all of the 16,000sq ft of the rented building was used for the growing of the illegal drug - nearly 5,000 plants were found - which had a yield estimated to have a street value of up to £2million. What signs can people keep an eye out for? Cannabis factories are often set up in residential streets and Sgt Hall says that people can keep an eye out for tell-tale signs such as: strange comings and goings at any time of day equipment being moved in and out feel the heat or hear strange noises from the set-up through the walls of your property the "sweet smell" of the cannabis Sgt Hall added: "Don't be too disappointed if nothing happens for a bit after your call or report, we have to make checks and balances before knocking people's doors in. "But it's clear that people don't want it in their street and we thank people for bringing information to us. "Not only is it offenders being brought to justice if you report it, but you are also helping to keep your streets safe." https://www.coventrytelegraph.net/news/coventry-news/coventry-news-cannabis-factory-police-16451587 Bongme
  6. hi The behind the scenes secrets of cannabis oil firm on the up near Bath So what is all this fuss about CBD cannabis oil? It is the latest buzz word, it is supposed to be a cure for nearly everything and everyone in Bath is talking about it. It has replaced turmeric in the trendy health market, with people paying as much as £60 for a small bottle of oil drops. It is supposed to cure arthritis, help you sleep better, help anxiety and pain and there’s even a sexy oil supposed to increase libido made in association with Bath sex toy company Love Honey. A new shop called Goodbody Wellness selling only CBD products recently opened in Broad St, Bath, the first of its kind in the country. Our reporter Nancy Connolly visited a cannabis farm near Bath to find out what all the fuss is about. CBD farm hidden not far from Bath As you drive a few miles out of Bath on the A36 you will come to the picturesque, postcard scenery village of Beckington, a beautiful village with houses made of natural stone, rose bushes and rustic country pubs. If you drive past the village further into the heart of the countryside near Frome you will come across the phenomenon that is George Botanicals, a company testing and providing CBD products on the international market. It is set on a huge farm, on what used to be a dairy farm run by the well known Thomas family, successful financial entrepreneurs. The George from George Botanicals is 29-year-old George Thomas, a young ex Monkton Combe pupil, already a successful entrepreneur, whose mission it is to bring legalised cannabis products to the market. When we were invited to go and visit a so-called cannabis farm here in Bath we jumped at the chance. But it is not what it seems. We expected to find a toothless old hippy farmer growing huge cannabis plants on a Somerset farm. We were so very wrong. Instead of the toothless hippy we got the fresh faced, immaculately dressed George, in smart suit and spotless Range Rover. Farm buildings have been transformed into modern testing laboratories with the latest equipment to test CBD products from companies all around the world. They don’t actually grow cannabis at the farm, not yet, although there are some new hemp plants, they are awaiting all sorts of licences. But it looks like once all the red tape is sorted this farm in Beckington will be a major supplier of CBD products, made from cannabis or hemp plants grown on the farm. When you enter the driveway you get the feeling this is no ordinary farm. Yes there are sheep but there is a feeling they are waiting for much bigger bucks. This is big business. The main building is an executive office, with smart suited men and women at desks with computers selling and distributing CBD products around the country. It is a huge business already and it looks set to get even bigger. George and his father Geremy have already made a lot of money with their investment company,Sativa and they look set to make a whole lot more with CBD retailing and testing. 'Passionate about CBD' Let’s get one thing straight – CBD oil will not make you high. It is not that kind of cannabis, but its health benefits for people suffering from arthritis, anxiety, pain, acne and more have been well documented, and leading medics around the world have confirmed its benefits. George Thomas is keen to point out he cannot make any claims about its benefits due to all sorts of medical and legal red tape; he is very careful about what he says. He said: “There is a lot of legal and other issues at the moment and we are waiting for all that to be sorted out. “People have told us they take CBD to manage a vast range of conditions, however due to the current classification of CBD as a food supplement we are not allowed to make any medical claims or give any specific advice. “I am passionate about CBD, it is not just a fad, we are working with King’s College, London to research the impact of cannabinoids on inflammation and respiratory diseases. “We are the first company of its kind in the UK and we really believe in the benefits of CBD.” What is CBD? So what exactly is CBD? CBD is a powerful plant extract that has been used for thousands of years. It is a cannabinoid, a natural ingredient found in the cannabis plant family, not the kind that is used for recreational drugs. Most CBD products are extracted from industrial hemp which is grown legally all over the UK. There is a lot of anecdotal evidence about the benefits of CBD. Some people swear by it. One woman, who did not want to be named, said she has even started giving it to her dog and has seen a remarkable change in his arthritis. Chemists and other outlets in Bath are already selling it. Other people say it helps with anxiety and sleep problems, and use it for general health and wellbeing. How much does CBD oil cost? It is not cheap, around £30 for a small bottle of drops, and that price goes up according to the amount of CBD in the bottle - it is all about the percentage of CBD in the bottle. Such lucrative prices is driving a whole new industry around CBD. The first shop Goodbody Wellness opened in Bath on June 29, and the company is also opening shops in Bristol and Cirencester. CBD is big business and the George Botanicals farm on the outskirts of Bath is set to be a major player in the world market. The testing side of the business is huge, but at the moment they have to import the CBD oils until they are fully licenced to grow and produce their own. More growth to come for Beckington business It is all very complicated but you get the impression young George is well on top of the situation and it will be huge business once fully operational. There is a high tech green house at the farm with strong lighting but at the moment it houses just tomato plants, waiting for permission for the real stuff. This certainly wasn’t the cannabis farm we expected, not yet anyway. If everything goes ahead as planned this farm on the outskirts of Bath will put Somerset very much at the heart of legalised cannabis products on the world market. Like turmeric, there’s no sign of it going away anytime soon. https://www.somersetlive.co.uk/news/health/behind-scenes-secrets-cannabis-oil-3107055 Bongme
  7. hi Cannabis investors ‘risk breaking law’ The Times British institutions could be breaking the law by investing in the booming legal overseas cannabis market, leading lawyers have warned. The explosion of the legal marijuana market, which is expected to be worth more than $60 billion by 2025, has kick-started a race to reap profits from the sector. However, despite London’s position as a global financial centre, investors are being held back by a lack of regulatory guidance on cannabis-related investments. “Companies are all lined up wanting to invest, but they don’t want to cross the line and be disqualified,” Alison Saunders, dispute resolution partner at Linklaters and former head of the Crown Prosecution Service, said. Canada, which legalised the recreational use of cannabis last year, has the world’s largest legal market, with investors from around the globe piling in to buy stakes in its marijuana producers. Tilray, the first to list on a US stock exchange, almost doubled its market value in a single day last year. The market is expected to grow substantially as countries review their legislation on the recreational and medicinal use of the drug. New Zealand is due to hold a referendum next year on whether to legalise the personal use of cannabis. In the United States, more than 30 states have passed laws legalising marijuana in some form. However, UK-based investors in cannabis stocks or businesses, which are legal in their home jurisdictions, could be in breach of the Proceeds of Crime Act. Michael Lyons, a partner at Clifford Chance, said that investors could be guilty of money laundering if they transferred proceeds from overseas cannabis businesses, for example in the form of a dividend, to the UK. Investment in such companies in the UK would be illegal and therefore the proceeds of such an investment would amount to the proceeds of crime as defined under UK law. He said that prosecution was unlikely, but “the risk cannot be ruled out”. He also said that he was aware of instances where British banks, concerned about the risk of being implicated in illegal activity, had closed the accounts of investors in Canadian cannabis stocks. “Banks may have a lower risk appetite than investors and may not process the payments, could report them to the authorities or potentially could ‘de-bank’ the customer if they determine the customer is engaging in activities which attract criminal law risk,” he said. The risks apply to international banks and pension funds where a UK subsidiary receives funds from a parent company that has derived income from a cannabis-related business. Steve Smith, a partner at Eversheds Sutherlands, said that it was advising banks and pension funds. “Traders may have purchased in good faith these listed stocks in another market, not realising that it is a technical offence in the UK,” he said. The Financial Conduct Authority said that it had no official guidance for UK investors in the sector. https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/cannabis-investors-risk-breaking-law-9rbbb6nmw Bongme
  8. hi Police officer assaulted after West Bromwich cannabis farm discovery A police officer was assaulted after a cannabis farm was discovered in West Bromwich. Cops saw three men acting suspiciously in a car in Church Lane yesterday morning (Thursday, July 18) - but when the officers approached the vehicle, they quickly scarpered and ran inside a house. Police caught up with the trio and after searching the house, they found a number of cannabis plants growing upstairs. The men were all arrested on suspicion of cultivating cannabis and two of them were also arrested for assaulting an officer. All three have since been released under investigation. "The occupants fled the car and ran into a house. "A quantity of cannabis was found at the address and three men aged 32, 25 and 25 were arrested on suspicion of cultivating cannabis. "The two 25-year-olds were further arrested for assaulting a police officer. "All three were released under investigation pending further enquiries." https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/black-country/police-officer-assaulted-after-west-16617121 Bongme
  9. hi Public support for legalising weed is growing in the UK The gulf between drug laws and public opinion is widening Twice as many adults in the UK are now in full support of legalising cannabis, compared to those that oppose it. A new poll, via YouGov and commissioned by the Conservative Drug Policy Reform Group, highlights the “clear and growing appetite” for liberalising drug laws in the UK, according to the group. According to YouGov, 77 per cent of survey participants would like to see medicinal cannabis legalised. 48 per cent of voters are in favour of legalising the recreational use of weed, compared to 24 per cent who oppose it. That number is up by 5 per cent from 2018. 22 per cent also believe anyone should be able to grow their own marijuana plants, with a higher number supporting that medical marijuana users should be able to grow. 18-24 year-olds make up the highest proportion of supporters at 54 per cent. Medicinal cannabis was legalised in the UK last year, and specialist doctors have had the ability to prescribe some cannabis products since November 2018. However, there have been, according to the Independent, virtually no NHS prescriptions in the last year. Private prescriptions are available but disproportionately expensive. 79 per cent of participants said the government was struggling with drug issues in the UK. 53 per cent believe drug use should be treated like any other health issue, and that harm reduction was the best course of action over criminalization. Seven out of 10 people surveyed disagreed with the UK’s prohibition tactics. The CDPRG believes the poll results reflect the “widening gulf” between public opinion and the UK’s outdated drug laws. According to Rob Wilson of the CDPRG in an article for The Sunday Times, it “illustrates the widening gulf between the stubborn, decades-old policies of blanket prohibition and the developing attitude of millions of voters.” Earlier this year, it was reported that the National Police Chiefs’ Council had given officers the go ahead to stop arresting cannabis users. Instead of immediate prosecution, police will advise users to seek treatment – but there is no pressure on them to do so. https://www.dazeddigital.com/life-culture/article/45265/1/public-support-legalising-weed-cannabis-drug-reform-growing-uk Bongme
  10. hi Illegal cannabis grower busted after he forgets to shut the front door "On entry, officers found a number of cannabis plants in various stages of growth, as well as paraphernalia linked to cultivating cannabis" An open front door led authorities to a massive cannabis bust in the UK last week. Concerned neighbours called emergency services last Friday, after the front door of a small home on Gilbert Crescent, Llanelli was open all day. “Police in Llanelli were called to an address in Gilbert Crescent following concerns that it had been left unsecured for several hours on Friday evening,” Dyfed-Powys Police spokeswoman told Wales Online, “On entry, officers found a number of cannabis plants in various stages of growth, as well as paraphernalia linked to cultivating cannabis,” the spokeswoman added. Police arrived to investigate the open door, entering the home when there was no response from inside, and found a room filled with growing equipment, cannabis plants and paraphernalia. The police are now looking into the identity of the occupant and if there is any connection to local drug dealing or gang activity. This isn’t the first time the Dyfed-Powys Police have encountered a cannabis seizure by chance. Back in March, police responded to a cardiac arrest and found £25,000 worth of weed. Officers responded to a man having a heart attack at Newtown train station, police performed CPR until the ambulance arrived where he was transported to the hospital. When police searched what they believed to be the man’s bag, they found knives and tightly wrapped bricks of cannabis. https://www.thegrowthop.com/cannabis-news/shut-the-front-door-nice-neighbours-accidentally-uncover-illegal-cannabis-grow Bongme
  11. hi Where's the best place to hide a shedload of cannabis? Lettuce boxes and a Mercedes, obviously... and you'll need a secret bunker Seven men have been jailed for their part in a £15m plot. Police seized two-and-a-half tonnes of the Class B drug Manchester Evening News A gang of would-be drugs kingpins smuggled £15m worth of cannabis from Spain hidden in pallets of lettuce and peppers - and dug a secret underground bunker to grow more. Seven men were today (Friday) jailed for their part in the plot, which saw more than two-and-a-half TONNES of the Class B drug imported into the country. The cannabis was hidden among kitchen equipment, including cooker filters, and vegetables in lorries arriving to the UK through Dover. They were transported via fake businesses and lockups in Manchester, Bolton and Warrington. The gang dug a secret underground bunker, with an entrance built from buried storage containers, on a farm in north Wales to grow more cannabis. A court heard that between July and November 2017, seven deliveries arrived in the UK via Spain through the Port of Dover. The drugs were hidden in packages labelled as oven filters - purporting to be destined for a kitchen firm. But the business didn’t exist. The address in Warrington was actually for a yard containing lockup units. Between September 2017 and August 2018, six more deliveries arrived through Dover, with drugs concealed in pallets of lettuce and peppers. They were destined for a cold storage company in north Manchester. The sixth delivery was stopped by officers in Dover on August 12, and uncovered 177kg of cannabis with a street value of more than £1.5m. Police raided a unit at the site in Lowton, Warrington, owned by Tony Cadman, one of the gang members. Further investigations linked the unit to Michael Lawler and Wesley Kinsella, also involved in the plot, and a second lockup at Hartford Works on Western Street in Bolton. When police raided the property, they discovered another £20,000-worth of cannabis stashed inside a stolen Mercedes, which led officers to Lee James Jackson and Scott Byrne. Enquiries at legitimate storage companies found consignments were destined for onward delivery to ‘Bog Farm’ in north Wales. The farm was also raided and officers discovered the concealed underground bunker designed to grow cannabis. They arrested Michael Harley, who was living in a caravan on the farm, as well as Michael Moore, who was living in the farmhouse. Harley admitted that the underground bunker was built at the farm three years earlier, but was no longer used because it was too wet to grow cannabis. Det Serg Richard Castley, of GMP’s Serious Organised Crime Group investigating team, said: "Thanks to the excellent work of our officers and colleagues on partner forces and agencies, we have managed to bring down a vast drugs network. "These men were responsible for attempting to import enormous amounts of cannabis into the UK; the sale of which would have been used to further criminal enterprise. "They even went to the expense of creating a large underground complex intended for cultivating the drug. "However the exceptional detective work of our investigation team was able to identify and dismantle this organised crime group. "Consignments packaged among lettuces or kitchen equipment were intercepted and prevented from finding their way onto our streets. "Drugs blight communities and ruin lives. Their sale is used to further the activities of organised criminal gangs who have no regard for the safety of the public or the rule of law. "Today the law caught up with these would-be kingpins and they have a long time behind bars to consider their foolishness." Seven men were sentenced for their roles in the conspiracy at Manchester Crown Court. Scott Byrne, 32, of Sandlewood, Westhoughton was found guilty of importing cannabis and sentenced to 13 years in prison. Michael Lawlor, 49, of Lewisham House, Kenton Close, Bolton was found guilty of importing cannabis and sentenced to nine years in prison. Tony Cadman, 32, of Alder Avenue, Widnes was found guilty of importing cannabis and sentenced to 12 years in prison. Wesley Kinsella, 31, of Heatherfield, Bolton pleaded guilty to importing cannabis and was sentenced to nine years in prison. Lee Jackson, 38, of Bradmoor Road, Wirral, pleaded guilty to importing cannabis and was sentenced to nine years and four months in prison. Michael Moore, 30, of Bog Farm, Eryrys, Mold pleaded guilty to production of cannabis on an industrial scale and was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison. Michael Harley, 35, of Bog Farm, Eryrys, Mold pleaded guilty to production of cannabis on an industrial scale and was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison. https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/wheres-best-place-hide-two-16614771 Bongme
  12. hi UK trials not needed for medical cannabis licensing process, says Hancock The Pharmaceutical Journal Medical cannabis will not need to be tested through randomised controlled trials (RCTs) in the UK in order to be licensed, health secretary Matt Hancock has told MPs. Speaking to the Health and Social Care Select Committee on 9 July 2019, Hancock said the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency had already started the licensing process for medical cannabis, with a decision expected in autumn 2019. Dame Sally Davies, outgoing chief medical officer for England, told MPs in March 2019 that medical cannabis could only be licensed through RCTs, adding that the process needed to start as soon as possible with funding from the pharmaceutical industry. The government-funded National Institute for Health Research has already put out two calls for trial funding, which are set to close on 31 July 2019. However, when asked by MPs whether the licensing process will need RCTs, Hancock said: “Well, no, because the licensing process takes into account global evidence. You don’t have to have trials in this country. “I’ve put in place a processes review to make sure the process of getting the drug to the people who need it goes as well as possible.” On 8 April 2019, Hancock announced that he had asked NHS England to launch a process evaluation of medical cannabis prescribing to “address barriers” to its prescription in order to ensure that medical cannabis reaches patients in need. In June 2019, former health secretary Sir Norman Lamb warned that if medical cannabis was available “only after the route of clinical trials; we will be waiting years”. https://www.pharmaceutical-journal.com/news-and-analysis/news-in-brief/uk-trials-not-needed-for-medical-cannabis-licensing-process-says-hancock/20206808.article?firstPass=false 1 comment Bongme
  13. hi Judge's message to the 'very lucky' mum spared jail over cannabis factory Manchester Evening News A mother of two who allowed her family home to be used as a cannabis factory has been spared jail after she warned prison would be ''detrimental'' to her children. Trainee dental nurse Claire Witherford, 36, was arrested after police raided her rental property and 15 marijuana plants worth up to £5,000 growing in her loft. During the swoop in Middleton, officers also seized various drug paraphernalia including a set of scales and discovered an illicit electric supply had been set up which bypassed the electricity meter. At the time Witherford, a former make-up artist, was living at the house with her daughter then aged eight - and was thought to have been pregnant with her second child. She initially gave no comment to police but later claimed she had ''manipulated'' by others into letting them set up the cannabis farm and said she had no involvement in it. She has since given birth to her child. At Minshull Street Crown Court, Manchester, Witherford, now of Heywood admitted production of cannabis and was sentenced to a 12 month community order during which she will have to abide by a 9pm-6am curfew. Sentencing Judge Mark Savill told her: ''You are of previously impeccable character. You are in a stable relationship with a daughter, now aged ten, and a young baby. “It is to some extent a complete mystery to me why you were foolish enough to involve yourself in this. I have regard to your lesser role although whilst it was in one light a lesser role but in another it was more serious as it was you that provided the premises. ''However this seems to be an isolated incident. You have lived a relatively stable, hitherto blameless existence but you have involved yourself in illegal drugs. ''You have two young children and one day you may have to explain yourself to them. Put them first in your mind and never involve yourself in this sort of thing again. Do you understand? You are being given a chance here. ''I very much don’t wish to see you again and I’m sure that is mutual. If you breach this order I can resentence you. But hopefully in a short space of time this will be behind you. Consider yourself lucky.'' The raid happened on December 16, 2017, after it is believed officers acted on a tip off. Prosecutor Duncan Willcock told the court: “The defendant was a tenant at the address in question. There was an inspection four days prior by the letting agency and there didn’t appear to be any issues. “Officers examined the property on the 16th of December 2017 and it was empty. They confirmed that there was suggestion that a male and female were living in the property with a child. "When officers searched the house they found in the loft area 15 cannabis plants and various paraphernalia related to the production of it. “Plants has a yield of between 420-600g with a street value of £5,000. Police left a note asking Miss Witherford to contact police and she did so eight days later voluntarily, attending the police station with a lawyer and giving a no comment interview. “She has provided a basis of plea saying she was the tenant of the address but had no other involvement. She was approached by others and asked to allow the production of cannabis in the property. At no time did she play any other role. “All she did apart from live at the address was top up the metre. Eventually those other individuals in control of this operation decided paying for electricity was too expensive so they installed equipment to bypass it.” In mitigation, David Bentley, said: “This is a woman with impeccable good character. Clearly the people who were involved manipulated her. In hindsight she should have said no. “She did not receive any financial payments. She would have received a small nominal amount but police put a stop to that. She was at the time the mother to a young child who is now 10. “She is deeply ashamed of her actions. It was a stupid and foolish decision to allow her premises to be used in this way. She has lost her impeccable character. She is now a mother to a 16-month old baby. This focus has realigned her life to live a law abiding one. “She has bettered her life by going to college and is training to become a dental nurse. This gives some insight as to the direction this realignment has taken in her life. She now fully realised that she placed her children in jeopardy. “An immediate custodial sentence would have a significant effect on her family. This conviction will have an impact on her future career. She is deeply ashamed. She has had time to consider the impact drugs have on the community. "A community order whilst juggling two children and the loss of her impeccable character would, in my submission, serve as punishment.” https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/judges-message-very-lucky-mum-16611647 Bongme
  14. hi Police take us on tour of cannabis farm so big it stretched over three floors This is the gigantic cannabis farm consisting of hundreds of plants spread across three storeys in north Manchester. Although the exact location of where the footage was made has not yet been disclosed, police officers from Cheetham Hill and Crumpsall shared the video yesterday afternoon. The tour like footage takes viewers through the building room by room. In the first room, dozens of large, mature-looking plants sit on what is thought to be white plastic sheeting. The walls and ceiling are white. Large black ventilation tubes run down the side of the room, and lighting and other electrical equipment is seen hanging from above. The footage is then shot upstairs, with the area once again lined with ventilation tubes and more empty black plant pots. The camera then takes you up another set of stairs, with more empty plant pots stacked high at the top. The rooms are once again packed with Cannabis plants. At this stage it is not yet known if any arrests have been made. https://metro.co.uk/2019/07/19/police-take-us-tour-cannabis-farm-big-stretched-three-floors-10425208/ Vid On Link Bongme
  15. hi Chris Evans: ‘May be the future’ Virgin Radio host reveals how he fixed shoulder CHRIS EVANS, who hosts the Virgin Radio Breakfast Show, revealed what medication could be in the future. Chris told listeners about his stiff shoulder which was painful every morning. The 53-year-old explained he used CBD oil to help him sleep and woke up to a surprise. He couldn’t believe his shoulder wasn’t stiff and he could even windmill it. Speaking on his Virgin Radio Breakfast Show, Chris said: “I slept extremely, exceptionally deeply and this is one of the claims for cannabis oil. “It doesn’t have the psychogenic in it, that’s the most important thing. “You can buy it legally now in Britain in Lloyds Pharmacy for example. “So, that’s last night. This morning I woke up, I always have a dodgy right shoulder and I’ve never talked about it before." The popular star revealed: "It’s not a big deal but I do. “I have a stiff right shoulder and I can barely move it in the mornings. “I have to do all these exercises backwards and fort including windmills. Then I get on the motorbike because that’s the hand you turn the accelerator with on your handlebars. “I can feel it all the way in. “This morning, nothing. Nothing at all. “I can’t believe it. It’s not clicking or anything. This could be a coincidence but everyday for three year, every morning, no matter where we are in the world or what time of day I get up, I could barely move my shoulder. “What is that about? Go out there, investigate it. “It’s part of this thing called micro-dosing. It may well be the future.” https://www.express.co.uk/celebrity-news/1155243/chris-evans-news-virgin-radio-breakfast-show-host-cbd-oil-sleep-cannabis Bongme
  16. hi CBD Goes from Unknown to Taking United Kingdom by Storm; Europe is Next On a stone-paved, tourist-packed lane in Bath, England, Harry Johnstone does his best to field a series of questions about the effects and use of cannabidiol (CBD) in the popular Holland & Barrett shop where he works. In the shop window, a leafy green display reads “Our CBD range has grown,” while inside a familiar image of a hemp leaf tops a sizable display of lotions, supplements, and creams that include cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid compound in cannabis. CBD's popularity at Holland & Barrett, a chain of health food shops throughout the United Kingdom that offers drops, creams, supplements, and other CBD-infused product,s is just one example of CBD's growing influence in the U.K. and beyond. Experts are preparing for rapid international growth to continue. A recent study released by the Brightfield Group, a Chicago-based marketing firm, estimated the European CBD market was valued at $318 million, in 2018 and estimated an astonishing 400% growth through 2023. The company said the U.K. is leading that trend in Europe, with a market near 61.366 million pounds, or $80 million in U.S. dollars in 2018. On streets and in shopping areas around England, CBD ads appear in display windows and on the shelves, along with a variety of hemp products. Cannabidiol can be extracted from marijuana or hemp, which is bred to be low in intoxicating THC. Once an obscure portion of the complicated chemistry of the cannabis plant, CBD is at the center of an explosion of consumer interest. Just don't ask store staff what CBD does. Benefits Aren't Touted Johnstone says there is little he can say about the products containing CBD or their use. “It's a very new product,” he said. “A lot of people do seem to be buying it. My mom uses it for foot pain.” Prices range from £4.99 to 29.99 pounds for the creams, oils, and supplements, about US$7 to $39. Johnstone said he can't say much about CBD, only describe how other customers have used it. The packaging does not make any claims about the effectiveness or medicinal properties, and marketing materials are restricted to a vague statement that the product may improve health and wellbeing. “I think that's perfectly correct, to be honest,” said Peter Reynolds, president of CLEAR Cannabis Law Reform, a group seeking to end cannabis prohibition in the U.K. Just as in the United States, where the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to evaluate many of the properties of CBD, neither have British medical authorities answered the same questions. Studies have indicated there may be extensive medicinal benefits from CBD as an anti-inflammatory, a pain reliever, and potential seizure suppressant. There are promising signs it can reduce anxiety. But Reynolds said it is important that governments properly regulate medicines to ensure consumers know the effects and benefits of anything taken as a remedy. “That's something that the CBD industry has had some trouble getting grips with. There are a lot of cowboy operations, a lot of fraudsters making the most outlandish medical claims. If we want the industry to be around in the long term we have to be responsible,” Reynolds said. He sees enormous potential in that long term, as more people become aware of the benefits of cannabinoids. Stores in the United Kingdom may now offer products containing hemp-derived CBD, under rules similar to many states in the USA. Products include liquids for use in vaping. (Photo by Bill Barlow) Many point to a high profile case during the summer of 2018 as a turning point both for British law and public attitudes toward CBD and other cannabis-derived medicines. Billy Caldwell, a 13-year-old from County Tyrone in Northern Ireland, has a severe form of epilepsy. News reports in the U.K. say he was the first child to be prescribed medicinal cannabis oil. The treatment was said to be successful and he went 300 days without a seizure until the Home Office ended the prescription. His mother, Charlotte, flew with him to Canada for a supply of cannabis oil, only to have it seized at customs as she returned home. His condition worsened, and he was taken to the hospital soon after his medicine was seized. Eventually, the Home Office relented, granting Billy special permission for its use. “That created a huge media splash,” said Hannah Hetzer, the senior international policy manager for the New York-based Drug Policy Alliance (DPA). She said the case drew sympathy from across the British political spectrum, including from some who had previously been inimical to loosening cannabis restrictions. “It pushed the government to start to move on cannabis reform. It definitely opened the debate,” Hetzer said. According to Reynolds, the market was non-existent in 2012 and rapidly grew to a £50 million-a-year industry, about US$66.2 million. An important factor in that future, as Reynolds sees it, will be educating medical professionals about the uses of CBD. “I'm delighted by how far these reforms have gone. The law has been taken out of the equation,” Reynolds said. The problem now is the medical profession tends to be ignorant of or even hostile to any consideration of benefits from cannabis-related products. Growing Vape Market At the House of Vapes on the High Street in the Shoreditch section of East London, staff member Kris O'Brien is happy to talk about the dizzying variety of products containing CBD, including hemp flower with little to no THC. The cost for the hemp flowers is 40 pounds for four grams, about US$53. On a quiet morning, O'Brien fiddled with his vape pen while discussing how CBD products, a portion of the vape market he said was close to invisible a couple of years ago, now make up a major portion of the shop's offerings. Most vape shops in the U.K. offer CBD in several forms, such as e-liquids and drops from Marie Jeanne and Aztec CDB, crystals from Harmony, oils, and flowers including several strains like “Sour Diesel” and “Hawaiian Haze,” with 3.9% CBD and less than 0.17% THC. There are also offers CBD-infused edibles including hard candy with 5 mg CBD concentration. There are House of Vapes shops scattered throughout London, but the Shoreditch outpost also offers coffees and a comfortable lounge area. O'Brien, who said he finds the CBD vapes calming, suggests that his customers start with a low concentration as they figure out what dose is right for them. The House of Vapes shop in the Shoreditch section of London offers a number of CBD products in a range of flavors. (Photo by Bill Barlow) As the shop began offering CBD products, he said, some customers were skeptical. The products contain a negligible amount of THC if any at all, he said. Full Legalization May be Years Away Reynolds, of CLEAR, said his organization also is pushing for reform of the U.K.'s marijuana laws, but for now, the ongoing and intractable fight over Brexit seems to have taken all of the air out of the room. “That just overwhelms everything,” Reynolds said. “British politics is absolutely paralyzed by that.” Yet he sees a growing movement toward legalization in the U.K. and elsewhere in the world, as other nations look to Canada's experiences. According to Reynolds, about 75% of the British public supports making cannabis available for medical use, with about half in favor of some degree of reform of drug laws related to cannabis. He said he dislikes the term “recreational use.” Little is likely to happen as long as Theresa May remains Prime Minister. May has seen a series of setbacks over Brexit, with her deal for withdrawal from the European Union rejected by Parliament. “The prime minister is a staunch, old fashioned prohibitionist. Once she's gone, and it can't be long now, I think we'll see real movement toward drug policy reform,” said Reynolds. In the weeks since Reynolds made that prediction, May took a step closer to the exit of No. 10 Downing St. On March 27, 2019, she announced that if her Brexit deal receives approval, she will step down as prime minister. But after Parliament shot down the withdrawal agreement for the third time ahead of the March 29, 2019, date to leave the European Union, that deadline has been extended six months, to Oct. 31. https://news.weedmaps.com/2019/05/cbd-goes-from-unknown-to-taking-united-kingdom-by-storm-europe-is-next/ Bongme
  17. hi Two women jailed for running West Norfolk cannabis factory ordered to pay back a total of £385 Two women involved in running a cannabis factory in West Norfolk have been ordered to pay back just £385 - most of which will be raised by selling cars for scrap. Norwich Crown Court heard how Lauren Brazier, 33, and Charlotte Sieley, 30, were found in a locked unit with eight mature cannabis plants when police raided a farm at Langhorn's Lane, Outwell, in June 2016. When officers searched the outbuildings at the site they found more cannabis plants in various stages of growth, with a potential of producing cannabis with a street value of £120,000 to £160,000. Brazier, of The Drove, Downham Market, and Sieley, of The Poplars, Elm, were both jailed for 32 months, in November, last year, after admitting production of cannabis. The pair were back at Norwich Crown Court on Friday for a confiscation hearing to claw back some of the cash made from the operation, Brazier and Sieley appeared over a video link from Peterborough jail. Marc Brown, prosecuting, said the benefit figure for Brazier was put at nearly £57,000 but she had no assets, so he said the amount to be confiscated should be the nominal amount of £10. He said the benefit figure for Sieley was also put at just over £50,000, but again she had no assets apart from three cars which could be sold at auction for scrap and she was ordered to pay £375. Gwen Williamson appeared for Sieley and Brazier and said the order for both women had been agreed. Judge Andrew Shaw made the order and gave them each three months to pay. He said that Sieley should serve an extra seven days in default of not making the payment and Brazier should serve one day. He also ordered the destruction of the drugs and growing equipment. At the pair's sentencing hearing the cannabis factory was described as a "professional" and large-scale operation. Richard Kelly, prosecuting, said that the set-up meant plants were divided into different growing stages in a "conveyor belt" system. In his sentencing remarks Judge Shaw told the women that it was a sizable operation and said: "It was a commercial cannabis growing enterprise aptly described as a well-oiled operation." However he accepted both women were now full of remorse. https://www.edp24.co.uk/news/crime/women-who-ran-cannabis-factory-back-in-court-1-6169924 Bongme
  18. hi Ex-soldier who survived roadside bomb ran 'massive' £1.5m cannabis production ring Brett Lloyd, 39, used his property management business as a front for 'highly organised drug production on a massive scale' A former soldier who survived a roadside bomb explosion in Iraq was behind a criminally sophisticated £1.5m cannabis production ring run from leafy Welsh homes. Brett Lloyd, who spent a month in hospital after the improvised explosive device threw his 4x4 into the air and 120ft down a bank, was spared jail at Cardiff Crown Court despite running drug production “on a massive scale". Judge Nicola Jones told him: “Anybody else in these circumstances without your exceptional mitigation would have gone straight to prison.” The court heard police raided two properties in Cardiff on April 27 last year and four in Swansea the following day. Eugene Egan, prosecuting, said: “This was highly-organised drug production on a massive scale.” The court heard Lloyd used his legitimate property management business as a front to conceal the drugs operation. Prosecutors said innocent property owners were duped and Albanian nationals were exploited to work as “gardeners”. Mr Egan told the court the volume of drugs involved was high and the electricity had been tampered with at each property to create sophisticated cannabis factories. The court heard officers forced entry to De Clare Drive in Radyr and seized more than 12kg of cannabis with a potential street value up to £399,000 . A property at nearby Arudur Hen in Radyr was raided the same day and police seized 230 plants with a potential street value up to £365,000 from four rooms and the attic. On April 28, 2018, police raided a property in Glanmor Road in Swansea and found 129 plants, plus equipment, worth up to £125,000 if sold on the street. At Station Road in Ammanford , Carmarthenshire , officers discovered the living room had been converted into a cannabis factory . They found 137 plants and 125 cuttings worth up to £301,000. Prosecutors said a property at Lon Cwmgwyn in Swansea had been set up as a cannabis factory but no plants were found. Another 297 plants with an estimated value up to £311,000 were seized from Victoria Terrace in Swansea . Mr Egan said Lloyd had a “limited” criminal record with seven previous convictions including one for possessing cocaine in October last year. The 39-year-old, from Oak Tree Close in Pontyclun , admitted six counts of permitting a premises to be used for the production of cannabis. In an interview with WalesOnline in 2008 Lloyd said he was diagnosed with dyslexia when he was seven and used the condition as an excuse for being a “wild child”. The rugby flanker quit Maesteg Comprehensive School at 14 to become a hairdresser’s apprentice qualifying two years later. Speaking then he said: “I was scrapping outside nightclubs and hairdressing wasn’t what I wanted to do. “My father said to me: ‘Son, you’re going down the wrong road – why don’t you try the army?’” His grandfather Wilfred Lloyd was a gunner in the RAF during World War Two and his uncle David Davies was a Sergeant Major in the Queen’s Colour Squadron, a unit with the RAF Regiment. Aged 18 Lloyd walked into Swansea’s army careers office and joined the parachute regiment. He said: “It was the best thing I ever did and it changed my life around. The training was hard – very challenging.” After basic training he transferred to the Royal Regiment of Wales and embarked on a peacekeeping tour of Kosovo. His defence barrister Hashim Salmman told the court on Thursday Lloyd served his country between 1997 and 2004 as part of the Second Battalion Parachute Regiment. The court heard he served in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Sierra Leone. In the 2008 interview Lloyd said he was attacked by a group of soldiers from another regiment on a night out in Germany in 2001. He said he spent four days in a coma and the assault left him partially blind in his left eye and deaf in his left ear so he was medically discharged from the army. Lloyd said he returned to the Llynfi Valley to live with his mum and dad and became a nightclub bouncer. He added: “I was heartbroken when I had to leave the forces. I was in a career I loved and I was proud to be a soldier. All of a sudden it was taken away from me.” Mr Salmman said he went on to work in private security in Iraq, Sudan, Afghanistan, and South Africa from 2005 to 2014. He was also an anti-piracy operative in the Indian Ocean. He took a job as a private security guard in Iraq, armed with M4 Carbine and Zastava M21 assault rifles and Glock 17 semi-automatic pistols. During his time in the country Lloyd protected convoys moving through dangerous areas and also provided close protection to kidnap targets. He said: “I loved it, really enjoyed the job. But I saw some terrible things and we had some very close calls. We were attacked with small arms fire nearly every moment.” Speaking in 2008 he said during their 21-hour days the teams drove armour-plated Ford F350 4x4s with a gun mounted on the back. They would drive in convoys of four, codenamed Alpha, Bravo, Charlie and Delta, with the target vehicle in the middle. Two lead 4x4s would drive half a mile ahead checking for improvised explosive devices – roadside bombs. Typically he would spend eight weeks in Iraq followed by four weeks’ rest in south Wales before returning for his next stint.But he often worked 13 weeks without a break – earning about £7,000 a month. He said: “People would fire at us every single day. But you can’t afford to worry. Many of my friends died. We would lose a couple of guys a month, most from IEDs.” Lloyd promised his then-wife he would return to the UK and take a less dangerous job. He spent £12,000 during leave time on courses learning how to work on oil rigs. He said he needed one more qualification – costing £7,000 – so decided to make a final trip to Iraq to raise the cash. Lloyd had been back in the war-torn country just two weeks when his vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb between Tampa and Ramadi. Mr Salmman said: “He suffered an extremely serious injury as a result of a roadside bomb.” The improvised explosive device detonated by the back of the 4x4, which was thrown into the air. Lloyd said: “We were driving along and the next thing I knew there was a bit of a bang. The vehicle flipped four times down a 120ft bank.” Lloyd fractured four vertebrae and suffered cuts and bruises. He was treated at an American hospital in Iraq and then flown home, where he spent a month in the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff. Mr Salmman said his client was diagnosed with anxiety, depression, and “extremely severe” chronic post-traumatic stress disorder. He told the court those circumstances combined with the end of his marriage created a “toxic storm” at the time of the offending. Mr Salmman pointed out the defendant made admissions from the start and had never been to prison before. In her sentencing remarks Judge Jones noted the “exceptionally high” value of drugs in the case and the wide geographical area covered. Lloyd was given a 24-month prison sentence, suspended for 24 months, and ordered to comply with a six-month curfew as well as completing 15 days of rehabilitation activity. The case will be listed for mention under the Proceeds of Crime Act on October 21. https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/brett-lloyd-soldier-cannabis-court-16609447 Bongme
  19. hi Desperate mum saved epileptic son's life by smuggling cannabis oil into Scotland Lisa Quarrell is now pleading with the Scottish Government to make the treatment legally available on prescription after the medicine brought her son back from the brink. As little Cole Thomson lay dying in a hospital bed, his mum was bravely smuggling illegal drugs into the country to save his life. The six-year-old was fighting for his life and doctors were shocked at how quickly and drastically his body was shutting down. They didn’t know what to do to save him. But his ex-policewoman mum, Lisa Quarrell, did. She travelled to Holland to get a prescription of whole plant cannabis oil and flew it back to Scotland. She travelled straight to the hospital where her son lay, no longer able to move or speak, and placed a drop of it under his tongue. She did this several times a day and within two weeks Cole could walk again. A week later he could talk. He’s now back to riding his two-wheeler bike and is preparing for primary two. He has gone from 16 seizures a night and some through the day to none in more than 100 days. The drug has cost £550 every nine days. From today it will reduce to £160 because Lisa has found a company to courier it to Scotland, but it is still a huge sum to find. And the Scottish Government refuses to allow an NHS prescription, even though children in England and Northern Ireland have had special NHS prescriptions for the same drug. Lisa and Cole’s dad David have had to fundraise to buy the drug, relying on friends and family for cash and organising charity events. They know that if they want to keep Cole healthy, they have no option. And meantime, police launched an investigation into Lisa bringing in the medicine. While they have cleared her of any criminality, the issue of whether it becomes a child protection concern is still under review. Cole, of East Kilbride, was diagnosed with drug-resistant focal epilepsy at three months old. Lisa, 38, said: “He would have seizures where his eyes would go right back in his head, he would foam at the mouth, he would shake and his body would contort into shapes it shouldn’t. “He would struggle to breathe and at times it would look like he was choking. It’s pretty much been like that since then.” When he was two, he had surgery to remove part of his brain. Lisa said: “They believed that was the damaged area and this would stop the seizures, but they came back after six months. In June last year they became more frequent and aggressive. In desperation I put out a Facebook message asking for solutions, but every one kept coming back to cannabis oil. “I was a police officer for 10 years, so cannabis to me was a bad word. “By October Cole’s seizures had started affecting him physically. Within weeks he was walking like someone with cerebral palsy. “He also began to suffer from Todd paralysis, which made him look like he had a stroke and left him paralysed for up to an hour. As time wore on, it was most of the day.” Medics suggested a second operation to halt Cole’s decline, but the surgical team admitted there was a high chance of him being left with a permanent disability, including paralysis down the right side. In the worst case, he could die. Lisa said: “After that meeting I decided I was no longer ruling out cannabis oil.” She found a consultant clinician in Barcelona who suggested Cole start on MyCBD oil. Within a week the paralysis had gone, but it didn’t have a great effect on his seizures. Around that time, UK law changed on cannabis oil and Lisa fought to get Cole the UK version, Epidiolex. Cole switched to it in February, but deteriorated so much that on March 26 he was rushed to hospital, unresponsive. Lisa said: “He just lay smiling at me, drooling. He wasn’t my Cole any more. “He couldn’t even lift up his head or swallow. I thought he was going to die.” In desperation, Lisa went to Holland where a doctor explained that Cole had previously been on “whole plant” medication while the UK version just had CBD isolate. The Dutch doctor wrote a prescription for Bedrolite and she flew straight to his bedside with it. Lisa has now managed to get a private practice in London to issue a prescription, which has legalised the drug. She is desperate for the Government to recognise her family’s plight, and when Health Secretary Jeane Freeman called her to a meeting last week she expected good news. But Lisa said: “Jeane Freeman was very cold. She didn’t acknowledge Cole during the time we were there. “She said they could not give an NHS prescription for a private medicine and that there was no research which would guarantee the oil would not have an effect on Cole’s brain in the future. But without it he could have died. “I told her other children in the UK had it but she said she was unaware of that. “The more questions I asked, the more irritated and angry she appeared to get. I tried to show a video of Cole when he wasn’t able to walk but she wouldn’t look at it. “She said she couldn’t overrule clinicians. But they applied for it and were turned down by health board bosses. I don’t want her to force them to give it to Cole, just to provide the system where they can.” Labour’s health spokesman Monica Lennon said: “I’m calling on the Health Secretary to do the right thing by my six-year old constituent Cole Thomson. A few months ago, doctors feared for his future but thanks to his mother’s bravery and medical cannabis, he’s been seizure-free for over 100 days. “Children in other parts of the UK are receiving funded medical cannabis; why shouldn’t a wee boy from East Kilbride get a funded prescription too? “Jeane Freeman can end this injustice and help children like Cole get the medical cannabis they need without further delay.” A Scottish Government spokesman stated: “The decision on whether to prescribe any medicine for a patient, and which medicine to prescribe, is entirely one for clinicians. Ministers can never over-rule clinical judgment and it is not for the Scottish Government to issue prescriptions or prescribe medicines. “If a clinician prescribed an approved cannabis-based product using an NHS prescription, it would be dispensed free of charge in Scotland. “The Cabinet Secretary has been consistently clear on this and has consistently expressed her understanding of the very difficult situation any parent will face in these circumstances.” https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/health/brave-scots-mum-saved-epileptic-18342434 Bongme
  20. hi Cannabis therapy and a tale of two sisters with epilepsy Evening Standard Chelsea and Tamsin Leyland have epilepsy but only one of them can legally access “life changing” cannabis. Investigations Editor David Cohen reports DJ Chelsea Leyland was preparing to take her GCSEs when she first began to suffer serious epileptic fits known as tonic-clonic seizures. “One day I was having a shower when I fell, hit my head on the side of the bath and started convulsing,” she said. “My dad could hear my head repeatedly hitting the side of the bath but the bathroom door was locked. He was panicking and had to break it down to help me.” Tonic-clonic seizures, formerly known as grand mal fits, involve abnormal electric discharges that overcome the brain, causing the person to lose consciousness and convulse for up to five minutes. In Chelsea’s case, their sudden onset was doubly distressing to her parents, London restaurateurs. They already had a severely epileptic daughter, Tamsin, five years older, who had arrested brain development since the age of 11 and was living in a special facility. Chelsea was meant to be their “normal child”. Chelsea was prescribed anticonvulsant medication, which significantly, though not entirely, reduced her seizures, but it had serious side effects. “It made me aggressive, emotional and full of rage,” she said. “I desperately wanted to be a normal teenager, having fun with friends, but living with epilepsy was hellish. I’d get brain fog and panic attacks and even a single alcoholic drink would make me vomit. I felt like this weird kid defined by my condition. I hated myself. I hated the world. At times I felt suicidal.” Three years ago, Chelsea, 31, made a life-changing decision. She began to treat her epilepsy with pharmaceutical-grade cannabis and weaned herself off her medication over six months. The result? She has not had a major seizure since and no longer suffers the awful side effects of her medication. “It has been utterly and completely and wonderfully life-changing,” she said, speaking to the Evening Standard in west London. Chelsea was able to access this precisely measured pharmaceutical-grade medical cannabis for one reason: for the last 11 years she has lived in New York, where it became legal in 2016 and where she was able to obtain a medical marijuana card. But in the UK, she faces arrest as a criminal if she brings her medical cannabis with her when she visits friends and family in London. And her sister, Tamsin, 36, is unable to access medical cannabis at all. Its legalisation in the UK in November 2018, following a public outcry over the cases of epileptics Alfie Dingley, seven, and Billy Caldwell, 13, was a moment of great hope for sufferers like Chelsea. But the reality turned out to be different from Home Office hype, meaning it is nearly impossible for patients like herself and her sister to get a prescription. NHS England issued guidance that said cannabis-based products for medical use should “only be prescribed for indications where there is clear published evidence of benefit” and “where there is clinical need which cannot be met by a licensed medicine and where established treatment options have been exhausted”. What would Chelsea need to get a medical cannabis prescription in London? “I would have to show that I have tried and exhausted all forms of medical treatment for epilepsy, including brain surgery,” she said. “What madness is this? Who would want their brain operated on before trying oil from a plant?” The bureaucracy of the NHS and a paucity of clinical trials has combined with this strict NHS guidance to ensure that medical cannabis is prescribed only in very rare circumstances, much to the chagrin of high-profile campaigners like Carly Barton, a sufferer of fibromyalgia, who has sought to use cannabis for pain relief as a substitute for opioids. Like these campaigners, Chelsea wondered at the point of legalising cannabis for medical use if you then make it so hard to access legally. Chelsea said: “I saw a YouTube video about a 12-year-old called Charlotte Figi, whose inspirational story had led to the changing of medical marijuana law across America and who is like the American equivalent of the UK’s heroic Billy Caldwell. “What got me about Charlotte’s story is that she had even more epileptic seizures than my sister and yet she was able to stop them with a little bit of cannabis oil. I thought, would my sister be this unwell if she had been on medical cannabis?” Chelsea, a drama school graduate, professional DJ and activist, has been co-producing a documentary film, Separating The Strains (directed by Caroline Sharp), which seeks to publicise the plight faced by epileptics who are unable to access medical cannabis. Her hope is to loosen the legislative rules on prescribing and get doctors to embrace medical cannabis as a potential cure. “I made the switch to cannabis and stopped taking my medication against the advice of my doctors, so I had no medical support which was unbelievably stressful,” she said. “I was prone to involuntary myoclonic jerks and each time you have one, it interrupts your brain, like somebody pulling the plug out of your system. Afterwards you cannot remember what you were saying or thinking. Tonic-clonic attacks are even worse. When you come round, you feel as if you’ve been punched in the head. It affected my memory, cognitive function and my confidence.” Chelsea believes support from doctors is critical to manage the transition because they can help you find the correct grade of cannabis for your condition. “Cannabis is not a one-size-fits-all story,” she said. “In my sister’s case, because she lives in a facility funded by the NHS, our only hope is for her to gain access to Epidiolex, a clinically trialled oral cannabinoid that has gained regulatory approval in the US but is still awaiting licensing here. “In my case, I use a vape concentrate cartridge that has a 1:1 ratio of THC to CBD and also a vape with a 1:20 ratio. But my journey to find the right balance has been full of anxious self-discovery. An open dialogue with a neurologist would have made all the difference. “That is why I am so passionate about this documentary. I want to use it as a platform to tell my story to help others. Sometimes I wonder: would Tamsin have lived a more normal life if she had been able to access medical cannabis? I want to help other people access cannabis because it’s too late for me to help the person I most dearly wanted to help.” https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/cannabis-therapy-and-a-tale-of-two-sisters-with-epilepsy-a4193101.html Photos On Link Bongme
  21. hi Cannabis yob BEHEADS seagull in sick Snapchat video A VIDEO shared on social media network Snapchat shows a man tearing a gull’s head off. The clip, which is thought to have been recorded in the Kidderminster area on July 2, has attracted the attention of both the RSPCA and the police. The shocking footage shows the thug reaching into a bush and grabbing up the bird before swinging it around until its head falls off. The man then approaches the camera and pulls open its beak while the person filming laughs hysterically and asks: "Is that its head?" The Snapchat video, which was captioned "Nerver (sic) fu**al normal jay gettin his dinner", has since been shared with the RSPCA. The video, ends with a clip of a lit cannabis joint with the caption "well needed.” An RSPCA spokesman said: "This is a very distressing video. We would appeal for anyone with information about this to contact us on 0300 123 8018." The sickening footage has also been widely circulated on social media with many people condemning the yob's actions. Tina Brook wrote: "Sad to need to even get pleasure from that." Valerie Bradley commented: "What on earth is wrong with people who apparently get pleasure from doing something as sickening as this?” Francesca V Romaya, perhaps going a little too far, said: "Let's do the same to him see how he likes it." Chief Inspector Gerry Smith, of West Mercia Police, added: "We have looked into the video involving a seagull that has understandably upset members of the community. "We have consulted with the RSPCA and although the video is very distressing and upsetting to view, it has been determined that the seagull was already dead, and will not be investigated further. "Officers will be speaking with the man that was in the video and give him words of advice." https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/792682/video-seagull-beheading-kidderminster-police-rspca-hunt Vid On Link Bongme
  22. hi Take a look inside the biggest medicinal cannabis farm in the country Medicinal cannabis growers at the country's largest farm of its kind say they have found success after switching production from tomato plants to the crop. British Sugar began growing cannabis for US pharmaceutical giants GW Pharmaceuticals in 2016, to be used in drugs to help patients diagnosed with a rare form of epilepsy. The 18-hectare glasshouse at the Wissington factory houses a non-psychoactive variety of the plant, which can be grown successfully thanks to recycled carbon dioxide wasted in British Sugar's sugar beet operations, as well as a number of other factors. Colm McKay, agriculture director for British Sugar, said: "Any grower, be it a farmer or horticulturalist, is always reviewing what crops they should grow. "We went through a review process to see what we could potentially grow and in conversations with GW Pharma it became clear that we could very successfully grow the crop for them." Having previously produced tomatoes, the glasshouse had to be reconfigured to include 240 miles of piping carrying hot water for heating the plants, as well as the installation of 19,000 LED lightbulbs. The team of 36 based at the site managed to begin growing the crop from cuttings within seven weeks, and now take delivery of 800,000 plant pots every cycle. Mr McKay said: "Our horticulturalists can grow the plant to the high level of specification that is required of this crop. The crop is highly regulated because of the quality of ingredient you need to produce for it to be used in the pharmaceutical industry." The specific ingredient needed from the plants is CBD, the highest yield of which can be found in the crop's flowers. The flowering cycle of the plants can be controlled by light levels, and have a lifespan of around 18 weeks before they are dried down and exported. "We've had a lot of interaction with the local community, and there were questions asked by the local community as you can imagine, but often we invite them to visit and when they come here and are able to see and hear what it's being grown for it breaks down a lot of those barriers," Mr McKay said. https://www.edp24.co.uk/business/inside-british-sugar-wissington-cannabis-factory-near-lings-lynn-1-6157803 Photos and Vi On Link Bongme
  23. hi 'KILLER PARANOID' Man who ‘fatally stabbed dad on train ‘smoked cannabis that “made him paranoid”‘ The Sun A MAN accused of murdering a train passenger stopped taking his anxiety medication but used cannabis that could “make him paranoid” every day, a court heard. Darren Pencille, 36, knifed 51-year-old Lee Pomeroy 18 times in less than 30 seconds. Pencille was on medication for anxiety, the Old Bailey was told. But his girlfriend Chelsea Mitchell, 28, said he had stopped taking it. She said he used cannabis, which would “calm him down and could also make him paranoid”. Mitchell added in a call to her that day he said he was hearing voices. Mitchell told jurors she fell in love with him after becoming pregnant in early 2018, despite not having seen much of each other in the months since they first met the previous September. Pencille, of no fixed address, denies murder. Mitchell, of Farnham, Surrey, denies assisting an offender. Trial goes on. https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/9440842/darren-pencille-train-stabbing-cannabis/ Photos On Link Bongme
  24. hi Middle-class parents are smoking cannabis with their children because they prefer them to experiment at home, says top private school headmistress Daily Mail Middle class parents are smoking cannabis with their children so they are able to 'experiment on their watch' a top private school head has warned. Helen Pike, who runs the the £19,000-a-year Magdalen College School in Oxford said that parents will happily offer their children 'a drink or few' at home and will 'also offer them a joint'. 'I don't think feel you should be experimenting with drugs - but not all parents feel the same as you do, and some parents might be OK with it. 'It is something that other parents might want to be aware of. They might want to take to their children about it and find out what they are doing at their friends houses' she told the Sunday Telegraph. She added that some parents will host house parties for teenagers as they see their children 'as friends'. Ms Pike, who became the first female head of the 540-year old independent day school in 2015 after previously running South Hampstead High School said it was more common in north London. She continued that while she was at school there was a culture of going to clubs, but that parents are more willing to accommodate the 'necessary evil' of underage drinkers to avoid the alternatives of 'fake IDs and drinking in bus shelters'. 'We got up to all sorts of things, but we didn't expect our parents to host and provide the refreshments' she continued, adding 'if teenagers are going to experiment, perhaps its better they do it on your watch'. The school leader, who has three children aged 25, 23, and 21, recommended that parents become 'the bartender' to make sure alcohol is consumed 'in moderation' at teenage house parties. Ms Pike has previously warned of drug-taking in schools, and sent letters to parents warning of the dangers of Modafinil, a 'smart drug' taken to improve alertness during exams. She has also spoken of the private tutoring market 'fuelling anxiety' in students. 'Tutoring is a market which feeds on parental anxiety' she said in March. 'So now parents will become more anxious that other parents are being tutored to be better parents than they are. 'All schools I know do excellent talks for parents and are there to support them in partnership in doing what is best for their children.' https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7245477/Middle-class-parents-smoking-cannabis-children-says-private-school-head.html 4 Comments Bongme
  25. hi NEIGHBOURS FROM HELL Think your neighbours are bad? This woman lived next to a paedophile, a baby killer and a drugs gang Sun DOZENS of bin bags filled with dried cannabis leaves litter each room and heaps of soil cover the floor. Here, in this two-bed terraced house in Darwen, Lancashire, a criminal drugs gang are growing and harvesting cannabis on a quiet residential street. And for neighbour Laura Scott, who stars in Channel 5's Nightmare Tenants, Slum Landlords, the drug gangs are the latest in a long line of neighbours from hell. “I have lived here for 11 years. First I had a paedophile living next door,” she says. “Then we had baby killers, they killed their baby and moved in straight from prison. Now we have a drug house.” Over 1,300 crimes were reported in Darwen in the past year. Nearly 400 of these were linked to anti-social behaviour and 350 associated with violent and sexual offences. You could smell it through the walls When letting agent Paul Ainsworth-Lord was approached by a new landlord asking him to take on one of his abandoned properties in Lancashire, he had no idea what he was letting himself in for. Paul arrived at the property to find the door handle had been destroyed from a recent burglary and he was forced to use a pair of pliers to break in. A thick layer of soil covered the carpets in the bedrooms and dozens of bags of dried cannabis were littered all over the floor. Metal tubes were installed into the walls to mask the smell of cannabis and discarded fans were left lying in the dirt. Outside, neighbour Laura expressed her horror when a passer by witnessed the house getting burgled and begged for better tenants after living next to paedophiles, baby killers and drug dealers. “Two men pulled up outside the house in a white van and drilled the door handle off,” she explained. “They came running out of the house with bags of drugs. “The police turned up and caught two people running away from the property. I knew they were growing, you can smell it through the walls. I just want to live next to nice people.” Tormented by the sound of footsteps Elsewhere in Norfolk, the programme revealed that one in three landlords rent out space in their own homes - when it goes wrong, it’s much more personal. Pensioner landlords John and Jackie McHiggins learnt the hard way with a tenant who lived in the flat above them in the building they owned. Tenant Katey tormented them with the sound of her footsteps but when they knocked on the door asking her for the rent she owed, she would never answer. John and Jackie called in professionals to get her evicted from the property, but after searching for her Facebook they were shocked to discover she wasn’t planning on moving any time soon. Not only had Katey failed to pay rent for two months, but she was also advertising to sublet her spare room in a post that warned potential housemates about her big house cat. Katey finally agreed to pack her bags when the landlords offered her £1,000, but not without leaving a grim reminder of her tenancy behind. Cat faeces covered the carpet A smell worse than sewage hit them when they first went to inspect the property. Cat faeces covered the carpet and rotting cat food was strewn all over the kitchen floor. The bin was overflowing with empty cat food packets, cigarette butts and the fridge was overflowing with rancid food. Mould festered in used wine glasses and empty crisp packets littered the floors. ackie was reduced to tears when she was confronted with the mess. “My nerves are shredded,” she said. “She has made my life a misery. I’ve never come across anyone like her in my life.” John and Jackie were forced to refurbish the flat to get it back to it's original condition, setting them back an eye-watering £10,000. Meanwhile in Blackpool, lettings agent John Bartram is forced to pay a disruptive tenant a fee of £350 to move out after he turned his bedsit into a drug den. Tenant Paul, who has a history of drug addiction, received a series of complaints from neighbours after daily disturbances from people turning up at the property with syringes and knives. The dodgy dealings left the landlord on the verge of bankruptcy after he lost five out of his 11 tenants. When letting agent John visited the property, he found boxes of used syringes and heroin. Neighbour Ibrahim Mansansaray, who works nights at a local hospital, said: “It’s unbearable. There’s always people coming in and out, banging and fighting constantly. “I hope the landlord can get him out and get some decent people in. My five year old son would have seen drugs, fighting, knives and syringes.” https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/9492192/nightmare-tenants-slum-landlords-woman-paedophiles-baby-killers-drug-dealers/ Photos On Link Bongme