ARRESTS: At least six people have been charged after hauls like this.
ARRESTS: At least six people have been charged after hauls like this.

Six arrests in a $3.3m crackdown

POLICE seized more than 1600 cannabis plants with a potential street value of almost $3.3 million in drug raids across the Northern Rivers this week.

Over a four-day period from Monday, State Crime Command in conjunction with Richmond Local Area Command police searched 31 target areas in Tabulam, Drake, Nimbin, Duck Creek, Pretty Gully, Tooloom, Yabra, Urbenville, Georgica and Findon Creek.

Police charged six people with the offence of cultivating.

Another alleged offender was identified, but has yet to be charged.

The 1646 plants seized ranged in height from one to four metres, police said.

“This command will continue to focus efforts on illegal drugs and people involved with illegal drugs,” Richmond LAC crime manager Detective Inspector Steve Clarke said.

“These results send out a stern warning that police will continue to target them,” he said.

Detective Inspector Clarke said the majority of the drugs seized were destroyed by burning on Thursday morning at the Casino police station.

Police used a helicopter for aerial identification of cannabis plantations throughout the week.

The total estimated street value of the plants taken away was $3.292 million.

More raids were conducted yesterday around The Channon.

Results of those operations were not known last night, but Detective Inspector Clarke said any drugs found by police would be examined and destroyed.

He also warned cultivators cannabis raids in this area would not necessarily be annual events as was sometimes assumed.

“Operations of this nature are generally annual,” he said. But, given the scale of cannabis cultivation in the Northern Rivers, they would be more sporadic.




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