Rotherham MP calls for more powers to crack down on industrial cannabis farms

A Rotherham MP has written to the government asking for more powers to be given to local authorities to crack down on industrial cannabis productions in their area.

Friday, 22nd April 2022, 10:50 am
Updated Friday, 22nd April 2022, 2:28 pm

Sarah Champion, Member of Parliament for Rotherham, has called on the Government to strengthen warrant powers to allow searches of properties operated by problem landlords, increased powers to enforce Emergency Prohibition Orders and the creation of a national register of landlords.

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In letters to the Home Secretary and the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Ms Champion said:“I remain concerned that raiding one facility does little to disrupt the criminal networks at their root. Far too often, production simply moves to another nearby premises, frequently on the same street. As a consequence, residents face ongoing problems in spite of successful raids.’

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Sarah Champion, Member of Parliament for Rotherham, has called on the Government to strengthen warrant powers to allow searches of properties operated by problem landlords.

“I am particularly concerned that a single premises may be raided only to again be used for cannabis production just months later. I am aware of this having happened with a number of properties in my constituency.

“The implications of this are alarming, implying at best, negligence and at worst, complicity on the part of landlords.’

Ms Champion added that industrial cannabis production is “far from a victimless crime,” and that it is linked to “violent criminal gangs, modern-day slavery and brings with it huge disruption for local communities and damage to power networks.”

“While joint working in Rotherham between South Yorkshire Police, RMBC and Northern Power Grid has brought significant success in recent months, I remain concerned that raids too often see production simply moved from one premises to another.”

“If we are to prevent this, it is vital that we disrupt the organised criminal gangs at the root of the problem.

“I strongly believe that greater powers to tackle rogue landlords can be an important part of the solution and hope that the Government will explore these suggestions.”

‘For my part, I will continue to do all that I can to speak out for those residents whose lives have been blighted by this criminal activity for far too long.”