Ballymount cannabis factory suspect released

A man in his 50’s, who was arrested in connection with the seizure of a massive haul of cannabis plants in Ballymount, Colbinstown last week was released without charge last Thursday evening.

A man in his 50’s, who was arrested in connection with the seizure of a massive haul of cannabis plants in Ballymount, Colbinstown last week was released without charge last Thursday evening.

A file will be sent to the DPP in relation to the man who, although not from the area, was living locally.

The discovery of the cannabis plants were made on Wednesday evening last, February 8, at a premises that is part of the Kildare Car Auctions complex of sheds on the N9 near Ballymount Church.

Members of the Garda National Drugs Unit and local Gardai searched the premises and discovered plants worth an estimated street value of n800,000.

Such was the enormity of the find, Gardai were still at the shed several days later.

The man, who was arrested, was held at Newbridge Garda Station for 24 hours.

When contacted, the owner of the premises refused to speak the Leinster Leader.

A Garda source revealed that the factory was a “very professional job” and that the people responsible were living on site.

It is understood that the perpetrators were in the process of preparing another part of the shed in order to expand their operations.

Gardai are looking to speak to the other people who were living there.

The electric lamps which were used to grow the cannabis have all been dismantled and removed, as has the cannabis itself.

A garda source said they were happy with the success of their operation but said they expected the culprits would simply move onto another big shed and start up again.

Perhaps as a result of the county’s proximity to Dublin and as well as a growth generally in home grown cannabis, there have been a number of such ‘factories’ found in Kildare over the past 18 months.

There was one in a rented house in Mylerstown, near Carbury in November 2010. There were two in the general Rathangan area discovered in the past few months – one on Boston Hill and another in the Industrial Estate.

And n130,000’s worth was discovered in a house in Newbridge just after Christmas.

Meanwhile the local district courts are now regularly seeing people being charged with growing the plants on a smaller basis.

Doctors have warned against the dangers of homegrown cannabis, saying it can be more potent that the kind that was previously available - and that it is more likely to cause psychosis in people who smoke it. The home grown plants appear to have more of the psychoactive compound but less of the substance which protects the brain from damage.