£300,000 of drugs seized

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Cannabis plants worth £295,000 have been found by South Yorkshire Police during a month-long crackdown on drug cultivation.

In total, 471 plants were recovered in Operation Barracuda.

More than 80 homes were visited by police, leading to 22 arrests.

Detective Chief Inspector Mark Wilkie, who led the operation, said: “The operation was set up to target people who we believed were involved in cannabis cultivation.

“We acted on information received and visited more than 80 properties across Barnsley.

“I am really pleased with the results.

“Not only have we recovered a substantial amount of plants, we will also have had a significant impact on any illegal financial gain that would have come from growing the plants.”

During the operation, 22 people were arrested, 26 people were cautioned, eight warnings were given out and six people were handed fixed penalty notices for cannabis cultivation. Police say individuals growing cannabis will continue to be targeted.

Mr Wilkie said: “Even though the operation has now finished, we will still continue to target individuals who think it is acceptable to grow cannabis.

“The growing cycle for cannabis is normally around eight weeks.

“So, in about a couple of months we will be revisiting those dealt with to check they haven’t continued with their horticulture.”

Shaun Wright, South Yorkshire police and crime commissioner, said: “The campaign in Barnsley has been a great success.

“I’m glad the force is taking tough action to catch these criminals – they cannot be allowed to profit from breaking the law.”