A LANDLORD says thousands of pounds worth of damage has been caused to one of his properties after it was turned into a cannabis farm.
The man, who asked not to be named for fear of reprisals, said he was unaware of anything unusual happening at his property on Stopforth Street, Pagefield, until he received a call from police a last week telling him they had discovered a cannabis farm.
It looks like they built it, farmed the plants and left
He said his tenant had been living there for four years and he had carried out regular checks at the property, with the last one being in October.
He said: “I have never had a problem with the tenant, who had been living there for about four years, before.
“I think he must have got into some sort of trouble with someone who pressured him into it or he started taking drugs and had maybe got into debt and to repay it they have let a gang use the house.
“I don’t think this is something he could have done on his own, it is a really professional job, they have drilled holes in the ceiling for vents.
“I think maybe he left and let the gangs take over because the farm was everywhere, all along the top floor and the loft.
“It looks like they built it, farmed the plants and left.
“I’d say by the amount of gear in there the plants they grew would have been worth around £100,000.
“The police attended on January 12 but they didn’t contact me until last week. It was a real shock to get a call like that out of the blue.”
The man, who is in his 50s, wanted to warn other landlords after people running the farm “trashed” his house.
He said: “They have completely trashed it. The damage is unbelievable.
“It is going to need a new kitchen, bathrooms, the holes in the roof will need fixing and it will need completely redecorating. It could cost up to £10,000 for me to get sorted.
“It is all insured and I have had the loss adjusters in but that is all I can do at the moment.
“There was nothing to suggest this was happening. The rent was coming in on time as always. But apparently the neighbours started to notice the smell and called the police.”
Police confirmed that they discovered a cannabis farm on January 12 at 7.45pm at Stopforth Street in Wigan.
They discovered around 80 juvenile plants and a 34-year-old man was given a caution.