In depth article looking at the human cost of UK marijuana production. Yeah some may say "Its only a little pot, harmless kids having fun". But its not soo harmless for the children trafficked inti it and facing prison when raided.
From the first-floor window of the flat where he was incarcerated, 15-year-old Tung began to piece together what the UK was like. He liked watching the busy road with three or four shops, a pizza restaurant and a petrol station. He had been told never to turn on the light, so he often sat by the window in the dark, peering out from the side. “Where I lived in Vietnam was a very remote area, just trees and dirt tracks. We rarely saw a car. I found it all so surprising.”
He was locked in the flat alone for two months. “It was terrible, the first month. I wanted to go out, to talk to someone. I almost felt like I was going mad. But by the second month I was getting used to it.”
For several years, Tung was one of Britain’s cannabis slaves: a hidden group of exploited children, locked up alone and forced to tend plants in converted houses, in dangerous conditions. Like many other trafficked child cannabis gardeners, when the flat was raided, he was sent to prison.
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The story of how much of the UK’s cannabis is grown sounds too far-fetched to be true: an international network of traffickers brings teenage boys from Vietnam to become enslaved gardeners in British suburbs. Yet every few weeks, another farm is discovered and new arrests are made.
Local newspapers offer fleeting insights into the industry, with scant facts: that police raided a red-brick terrace house on a suburban road in Liverpool after neighbours complained of the smell, and found the house stripped of furniture and converted into a cannabis farm, with two teenage boys hiding, terrified, beneath the floorboards. That a cannabis gardener in County Armagh was found living on tins of dog food. Or that police visited a two-storey house in Plymouth and found cannabis plants in every room, cellar to attic, tended by a Vietnamese boy with injuries to his face, who said he was 13; he was put in the care of social services while investigations were launched, but within days he had disappeared....
Full article here.
Full article here.