Men who grew cannabis plants worth £500,000 at a secret factory inside a disused building have been sent to prison for a total of eight years.
Robert Dibb and Wayne Ivory were charged with producing more than 20 kilograms of the Class B drug at a building in West Yorkshire.
The pair were arrested after neighbourhood police officers noticed a strong smell of cannabis coming from the former engineering building.
After entering the building the officers found the floor was warm, despite there being no heating system.
Behind a trapdoor they found a four-room cellar with more than 600 cannabis plants as well as a bin bag of harvested cannabis buds.
Leeds Crown Court tried the men and sentenced Ivory, 42, for five years and Dibb, 52, for three years.
Inspector Simon Jessup said the cannabis growing operation was “highly sophisticated”, as he called for members of the public to be aware of suspicious activities.
He added that the officer’s concerns “led to the discovery of this cannabis farm and the downfall of the men running it”.
“I would encourage local residents to look out for suspicious activity in their areas that could indicate a property is being used to grow cannabis.
“If people notice an unusual smell, boarded-up windows, electrical equipment being delivered in significant quantities, or people coming and going at all hours, I would urge them to pass their suspicions on to us so we can check it out”, Jessup said.
Earlier this month it was revealed that campaigners are to stage a cannabis event calling for weaker drugs laws.
The Glasgow Cannabis Social Club is organising the event, to be held in April, which will see speakers promoting cannabis to the public.MSPs have criticised the police’s lack of action against the gathering, as they are aware of the event but say they will only stop proceedings if criminal activity takes place.
Also this month a UN drugs watchdog said decriminalising cannabis is a “misguided” initiative and risks people’s long-term health.
The International Narcotics Control Board criticised moves to weaken drug laws around the world in its annual report.