NSW Police have seized $7.2 million in cannabis after three raids in the New England area last week.
Police carried out three raids over a four-day period, busting bud operations on properties near Uralla, Glen Innes, and Glencoe. The raids were carried out by the State Crime Command’s Drug and Firearm Squad with the New England Police, the Western Region Enforcement Squad (RES) and the dog squad.
The operation resulted in police seizing 3,619 cannabis plants in various stages of growth. Police believe the street value of the haul is around $7.2 million.
Four people were arrested in connection with the cannabis, including two men and two women aged between 57 and 68. All four were given drug-related charges and will face court in the coming months.
The New England area is no stranger to cannabis cultivation, according to the Northern Daily Leader. Police seized over $8 million in cannabis in the area in 2018, while a single operation in 2016 uncovered $8.3 million of cannabis on three properties. Back in October NSW police also carried out one of Australia’s biggest bud busts, seizing over $40 million in cannabis during three raids.
The New England raid was also one of several large raids from the past fortnight. On November 24, police uncovered 122 cannabis plants valued at $610,000 in Penrith. A 40-year-old man was arrested on drug charges as part of the operation.
While NSW police didn’t share news of their New England cannabis bust on their infamous Facebook page, commenters on the Penrith post have criticized NSW police for their laser-like focus on cannabis cultivation. One such comment reads:
Nice to know that the government is wasting money and resources on a war with a medicinal plant. Come on, just legalise it already.
And with the majority of Australians supporting the legalisation of recreational cannabis for the first time in 2019, we hope the government will be quick to reform the laws.