Police uncover cannabis growhouse on Steel Street, Newcastle

Police uncover cannabis growhouse on Steel Street, Newcastle

Police uncover cannabis growhouse on Steel Street Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: NSW Police
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Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: NSW Police

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: NSW Police

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: NSW Police

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: NSW Police

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Steel Street, Newcastle. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

TweetFacebookCANNABIS plants the size of Christmas trees have been removed from a“complex and well-established” grow house hidden inside an inner-city Newcastlebuilding.

As office workers on their lunch break watched on,police collected at least 40 bags of buds and a large number of plants at varying stages of maturity from the Steel Streetstorage shed on Tuesday, after executing a search warrant at the property at 2am and finding an elaborate hydroponic set-up.

Newcastle City Local Area Command Inspector Shane Buggy said the operationincluded an intricate electrical system, irrigation, ventilation and a large number of chemicals including a fertiliser called “Monsta Bud”.

“It’s acomplex and well-established grow houseacross several rooms,” Inspector Buggy said.“It’s a commercial premises, so it’s quite large in the scheme of grow houses. Any situation where we have a building which has illegal wiring,unattended lights designed to produce heat and aheap of chemicals lying around, it’s potentially dangerous.”

Specialist police, including detectives, target action group officers and forensic services were at thescene until late on Tuesday and may need to returnon Wednesday.

“It’s a large operation and this type of drug house – as far as dismantling and investigation – is labour intensive.”

Inspector Buggy asked for anyone with information or who saw anything suspicious to contact Crime Stoppers.

“It might not be suspicious activity – it might be a lack of activity,” he said.

“Quite often nobody lives in these places, they’re only attended to at times when people are working there sporadically.”

Images released by police showed a large crop of plants under heat lamps.

In another room, a mess of electrical cords andextension leadswere plugged into overloaded power outlets.

The discoverycomes a month after police dismantled a sophisticated cannabis grow house in Kotara.

Detectives and specialist police entered the five-bedroom Marshall Street property on September 6 following a tip-off and found it had been completely converted into a hydroponic cannabis factory. More than 150 plants were inside.

Meanwhile, three men have been charged after police allegedly found them in possession of 18.8kg of cannabis on Monday night. They are Vietnamese nationals unlawfullyin , according to court documents.

The Anh Hoang and Hoai Nam Nguyen,both 22,and Cuong Van Nguyen, 33, faced Newcastle Local Court on Tuesday.

Each was charged with possessing a prohibited drug and supply of a prohibited drug, after police allegedly found 18.8kg of cannabis in the vehicle they were travelling in during a stop atGlebe Road, Adamstown.

Officers pulled the vehicle over around 6pm and breath-tested the driver, who provided a negative result.

Bail determination documents noted that all three men were illegally in , and were“liable for immigration detention”.

The bail determination for the older Mr Nguyen noted that he was“an extreme flight risk”.

None of the three men applied for bail on Tuesday –and it was formally refused.

According to court documents, Mr Hoang and the younger Mr Nguyen listed Teralba Road, Adamstown, as their home address, while the older Mr Nguyen was listed as living at Beaumont Street, Hamilton.

They will face court again, via audio visual link,on November 16.