Three arrests and hundreds of cannabis plants seized in drugs bust

A drugs bust involving million-dollar properties in Papakura and East Auckland resulted in three arrests and the seizure of hundreds of cannabis plants.

Six houses were found set out as cannabis growing rooms during the execution of eight search warrants in Papakura and East Auckland on Thursday 15 December 2016.

The operation involved 45 Counties Manukau officers together with staff from the National Organised Crime Group.

Each house had an elaborate growing set up with, on average, 60-80 plants of various age and size.

Five of the six houses were rented and some are million-dollar-plus properties.

“The houses have sustained some damage as a result of the activity taking place inside them,” says Detective Senior Sergeant Kevin Tiernan, who’s in charge of the investigation.

“Clearly the landlords for these properties have never done a house inspection in the time the property has been rented and they had no idea of the illegal use that was going on.

“If it can be proved that any of the landlords did know what was happening in the houses, then Police would look at taking proceed of crime action against them and seeking the forfeiture of the houses to the Crown.”

Over 500 cannabis plants were seized on the day and have since been destroyed.

A man and woman, both aged 29, and a 42-year-old man have been charged with cultivating cannabis and were due before Manukau District court on Friday.

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