Cannabis Campaigners' Guide News Database result:
UK: Lancing cannabis cafe drugs raid
Friday 20 Jul 2007
POLICE battered through a brick wall into a cannabis café whose owners
had previously denied any drug connections.
The venue in Freshbrook Road, Lancing, which was designed with expensive
furniture and trendy fittings, was secured with burglar bars on all
windows and an air-lock double steel door, used in some defence bunkers.
Police officers from Worthing and Brighton stormed the café on Thursday,
July 19, where 13 people were using the facilities, after reports of
illegal drug taking on the premises - despite the recently introduced
smoking ban in public places.
A furnace, which police believe may have been used to dispose of
evidence, was found and was bellowing out smoke from the roof.
Three local men in their 30s were arrested for drug offences.
Drugs and hundreds of pounds of cash were found and police said they
will be investigating whether drugs' profits were used to buy or fund
In February this year a spokesman for the social club, denied the place
was a haven for cannabis smokers.
Previous investigations by police have turned up no firm evidence of
drug use on the premises.
Adur district commander Chief Inspector Lawrence Hobbs, speaking after
the raid, said: "This operation had been planned over many months and is
not targeting recreational cannabis users but those individuals who we
suspect are concerned in the management of this cafe, which is operating
illegally within the heart of a residential community.
"I would like to apologise to the members of the community who live
nearby who perhaps feel we should have acted sooner but it has been
necessary to prepare our investigation thoroughly before executing the
"Likewise, I would apologise to completely innocent members of the
community who live nearby who may have been caught up in our attempts to
disrupt the cafe and would have been stopped by police officers.
"This week the government announced a review of the laws surrounding the
use of cannabis and, whilst I cannot speculate on the outcome of the
review, what I can say as a local police commander is that I am doing
all that I can to suppress anti-social behaviour and criminality in the
Lancing area and I am certain that there are established links with the
use of cannabis."
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