UK police were stunned recently when they found marijuana growing in World War II-era tunnels in West Yorkshire. Since the discovery, a 55-year-old man from the area has been sentenced to two years of prison for leasing the tunnel beneath his business to illicit cannabis growers.
The tunnels served as air-raid shelters during World War II before becoming a focal point of the UK's War on Drugs last summer, when police arrived to search Hodgkinson's business. While excavating the tunnels, police discovered a "a massive safe" that contained "a total of 48 mature plants" and "approximately £36,000 (USD$47,000) of cannabis that was packaged up and ready for sale."
Hodgkinson has denied being involved with the sale of any of the cannabis products, but he did admit to collecting "a cut" of the profits for letting the growers use his space.
Hodgkinson told police was approached by the illicit cannabis growers several years before he was charged. Facing growing financial challenges with his business, Hodgkinson eventually accepted the growers' offer and began renting out the WWII tunnels.
This isn't the first illegal UK cannabis grow to be discovered in underground tunnels in recent months. Back in October of 2018, police discovered the largest-ever illicit cannabis grow located in an abandoned lime quarry.
Recreational cannabis remains illegal in the UK. And while the country moved to legalize medical marijuana last year, the substance remains prohibitively difficult for many patients to receive. Until those laws change, police should expect to continue finding cannabis in the strangest of places.
h/t The GrowthOp