Cannabis and £10k found in police raid
POLICE who raided a flat in Shepton Mallet seized drugs and £10,000 in cash.
A warrant was executed on October 18 at a property in Shepton's High Street.
Avon and Somerset police collected information from members of the public and observations from police officers
Inspector Mark Nicholson said: "We seized five plants and approximately three-quarters of a kilo of cultivated flowering heads, believed to be cannabis, and seized a substantial amount of cash, believed to be around £10,000."
Three people were arrested: a 63-year-old man, a 56-year-old woman and a 35-year-old man. They are all now on bail.
Police are awaiting forensic examination results of the seized plants.
Cannabis is often described as a "gateway drug", implying that its use causes people to also try more dangerous drugs.
A police spokesman said: "If you're involved with drugs, you're involved with drugs.
"It's a drug community and cannabis factories are commercial businesses, not for personal. It's a highly lucrative business."
Mr Nicholson said: "Cannabis cultivation is not a particular problem in Shepton Mallet or the wider Mendip area.
"Having said that, we take cannabis and all drugs use very seriously and will deal robustly with people who break the law.
"We rely a great deal on the public to be our eyes and ears, so if anyone has concerns about drugs use or cannabis cultivation in their community, and its attendant anti-social behaviour, I would urge them to call police on 101 and report it."
Force drugs strategy manager Paul Bunt said: "Operation Viscount is our dedicated resource to tackling cannabis production across Avon and Somerset. We know that cannabis can be linked to serious and organised criminality which can have a devastating effect on our local communities. I would like to thank the members of the public who continue to support our work by providing us with vital intelligence and working with us to keep our streets safe."
Following an unrelated incident, two men have appeared in court facing allegations of producing cannabis at an address in Shepton Mallet after police allegedly found a total of 29 plants growing inside.
Jester Russell Chubb, aged 21, of Martock Road, Long Sutton and Scott Confrey, aged 26, of Kidder Bank, Wells, appeared in the dock together before Somerset Magistrates.
They were both jointly charged that on June 20 at Shepton Mallet they produced a quantity of cannabis that was said in court to be "more than just a domestic operation".
Confrey was further charged with being in possession of 3.38g of ketamine on the same date.
Both defendants did not enter any pleas to the charges and the case was adjourned at the request of defence solicitor Michaela Rose who claimed that each defendant had grown a smaller number of plants in their own individual bedrooms and should not be jointly charged.
The magistrates agreed to the adjournment to enable a written basis of plea to be submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service.
Both defendants were released on unconditional bail to return to the court at Yeovil on Monday November 4 when they will be expected to enter pleas.