Express & Star

Major Bilston drugs bust as police swoop on one of biggest cannabis factories ever found in region

A major drugs bust saw police swoop on Bilston industrial units seizing hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of cannabis – with one man arrested following a 30-minute stand-off.

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Photographs from the bust.

The Express & Star joined police during the raid on the huge cannabis growing operation in one of the biggest raids carried out in the region.

Dozens of officers from more than five West Midlands police organisations loaded into vans at around 8.30am on Wednesday to carry out the raid on industrial units on Reliance trading estate on Livingstone Road.

Residents on Chem Road, Stanley Place and Stom Road were awoken as officers in protective uniforms surrounded the unit just metres from their houses.

Stihl circular saws were used to breach the building's entrances; all the while, screaming for possible inhabitants to "get on the floor!".

On entry to the unit, more than 10 rooms filled with cannabis plants were uncovered - with a street value of potentially one million pounds.

After breaching the unit, officers discovered one man, who quickly darted onto the roof of the building, beginning a 30-minute stand-off with police as they tried to coax him down.

After almost half an hour of anxiously waiting for the man to leave the roof, the suspect dropped down into the hands of police, who quickly ushered him into a waiting van for questioning.

Over five policing groups joined forces to execute the warrant, including officers from the Bilston Policing Team, the Operational Support Unit, the Dog Unit and the Serious Organised Crime and Exploitation Team (SOCEX).

Officers utilised high powered saws to cut through the buildings doors, gaining entry