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Chief Inspector Mark Smith Twitter
Chief Inspector Mark Smith Twitter
UK News

Another old church converted into a cannabis farm

by Cara Bentley

A historic church right next door to a primary school has been raided, with 400 cannabis plants found growing inside. 

The United Reformed Church in the village of Armitage in Staffordshire is a Grade II-listed building from 1820 but has not been used as a place of worship for more than 20 years.

A local man has been arrested and charged after 400 cannabis plants were found growing inside.

Chief Inspector Mark Smith


Despite being commended for its special architectural or historic interest, the interior has had its space invaded by special lights, power banks and wooden frames to enable an industrial level of cannabis production. 

A police raid at the end of July uncovered the drugs and the man has appeared in court. 

This is the second finding of a cannabis farm in a church that has been revealed recently.  

Police discovered a sizeable cannabis farm on the premises of an unused church building in County Durham. Extractor fans and 72 plants were found in the loft of Wheatley Hill Methodist Church in May. 

Chief Inspector Mark Smith, who is based in Lichfield for Staffordshire Police, praised his officers for seizing the cannabis, adding: "I'm glad this haul is off the streets and in our custody. Top job by Sergeant Green and troops."

A spokeswoman for Staffordshire Police said: "Hazret Malaj, 31, of Rugeley Road, Armitage, has been charged with producing a controlled drug of Class B after officers discovered almost 400 cannabis plants in a church in Rugeley on Friday.

"He has been remanded until his next court appearance."

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