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Police warning as third man charged in £200k Co-op bank haul

Police warning as third man charged in £200k Co-op bank haul

The war on drugs in North East Lincolnshire can only be won with the help of members of the public.

Humberside Police have pledged to step up the campaign to rid our streets of drugs which blight our communities and families.

Following the raid at a former Grimsby town centre bank a third man has now been charged with the production of cannabis at the Osborne Street bank offices.

Valdes Grebnevas, 45, of no-fixed address appeared at Grimsby Magistrates’ Court and will appear at Grimsby Crown court on June 10.

The charge is the latest after six men were arrested in the raid by police which uncovered a £200,000 cannabis factory.

Police took two days to clear the 500 plants and associated equipment from the former Co-operative bank.

The discovery came just a few days after police raided a home in Park Street, Cleethorpes where a number of cannabis plants were found following a tip-off from a member of the public.

Part of the cannabis factory found in the former Co-Operative bank building in Grimsby

In February police found 1,000 cannabis plants in premises above the former Beijing Dragon in Wellowgate, Grimsby.

And last month, the man behind a huge haul found in the former Barclays bank on Cleethorpe Road in 2014 was back in court.

 December 2016, Toi Van Le, 54, was jailed for 11 years and 10 months after he was convicted of nine charges of conspiring to produce cannabis following a 17-day trial. It included an elaborate set-up in the former Barclays bank on Cleethorpe Road, Grimsby.

At a Proceeds of Crime hearing last month , it was revealed he had profited by about £750k from the nationwide scheme.

Part of the cannabis haul found in the former Barclays bank on Grimsby's Cleethorpe Road in 2014
Part of the cannabis haul found in the former Barclays bank on Grimsby’s Cleethorpe Road in 2014

The empty branch of Barclays Bank in Cleethorpe Road had been converted into a cannabis factory and  Humberside Police  discovered around 1170 viable plants at the premises.

The two massive hauls of cannabis were was not the largest discovered in Grimsby.

A redundant factory on King Edward Street was used to produce well in excess of 1,200 cannabis plants – just yards from Grimsby Police Station.

Inspector Mel Christie of Humberside Police said: “We want to remind local communities that whether or not we seize cannabis or harder drugs like cocaine or heroin, we’re not only taking illegal drugs off the streets but we’re also cracking down on other crimes that surround drug use and supply.

Police in Abbey Road, Grimsby, following the discovery of a cannabis factory above the former Beijing Dragon restaurant, on the corner of Wellowgate.
An officer removes a large bag of cannabis from the property
Police in Abbey Road, Grimsby, following the discovery of a cannabis factory above the former Beijing Dragon restaurant, on the corner of Wellowgate. An officer removes a large bag of cannabis from the property

“That can be anything from theft, robbery, burglary to much more serious crimes that can go hand-in-hand with drugs activity.

“We are looking at the bigger picture. By cutting off the supply of drugs, we also cut off the crime surrounding them.”

He added: “If you have any information or concerns about drugs in your area let us know.”

The top officer said police rely upon information being passed to them from members of the public and police gather that intelligence and monitor premises.

Information about suspected drugs production or any other suspicious activity can be passed to police by calling Humberside Police on 101 or alternatively by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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