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Criminals Using Drones To Find Cannabis Farms and Steal Crops 258

Posted by samzenpus
from the red-eye-in-the-sky dept.
schwit1 (797399) writes "There has been a huge surge in the number of hidden cannabis farms across Halesowen, Cradley Heath and Oldbury, towns on the outskirts of rural Shropshire some seven miles from central Birmingham. They require hydroponic lights for the marijuana plants to grow – and the huge amounts of excess heat given off make them easily spottable for a would-be criminal with a drone carrying infrared cameras. One such man says that after finding a property with a cannabis farm he and his crew either burgle or 'tax' the victim."
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Criminals Using Drones To Find Cannabis Farms and Steal Crops

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  • Duh... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Mashiki (184564) <> on Friday April 18, 2014 @12:32AM (#46785419) Homepage

    In the old days, criminals would just follow others out or use dogs trained to sniff out other peoples grow ops in some farmers field, woods/back wood lot/etc. They're just going hi-tech, nothing to see in that sense.

  • Left-Wing Propoganda (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SuperKendall (25149) on Friday April 18, 2014 @01:37AM (#46785639)

    the Colorado Government is already at it with their right wing propaganda

    Colorado is (narrowly) governed by the Democrats, not right wing. The Democratic governor is trying to slow down states [] from legalizing, despite it being a roaring success for everyone.

    In fact what you'll find these days, is that most right-wing people lean libertarian - which is exactly why the people of Colorado (who lead independent/to the right) were perfectly fine legalizing something so many people did all the time anyway.

    Look to the Democrats to shut it down []... They are the ones that need the massive funds the government gets from the war on drugs to help fund lots of other progressive measures.

  • by Karmashock (2415832) on Friday April 18, 2014 @01:38AM (#46785641)

    Many growers have been doing this for years. Its not a big deal. You dig out a big hole in the ground, line it with concrete, throw a roof on it, and then pile dirt on top of the roof. No infrared signature.

    You can even put it under your house or another greenhouse that has vegetables and flowers. If anyone quizzes you about all the materials you say its for that.

    There is an issue with the smell. Nothing you can really do about dogs besides creating a hermetically sealed compartment that has very serious airfilters. Which is sort of the Walter White solution.

    Anyway, build underground... its easy and works.

  • Re:Where? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dkf (304284) <> on Friday April 18, 2014 @02:06AM (#46785699) Homepage

    Halesowen? Cradley Heath? Oldbury? Shropshire? Where are these towns, Middle Earth?

    Where do you think Tolkien stole the names from? Though he should've avoided getting creative with "Mordor" and stuck with Wolverhampton.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 18, 2014 @02:54AM (#46785785)

    According to a newspaper article in sweden (translated) []
    Drug dealers have set up webcams to be able to monitor police activity in the area.

  • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Friday April 18, 2014 @03:43AM (#46785887)

    No, most right-wing people *claim* they lean libertarian.

    And they do. Except on drugs. And media regulation. And pornography. And abortion. And federal abstinance-only funding. And gay marriage. And government religious endorsement. And assisted suicide.

    'Libertarian' in the US is essentially a codeword for 'conservative, but don't want to admit it.' The only true libertarian aspect they have left is their economic policy, which stems less from any form of idealism than it does from the influence of corporate pressure groups who regard any form of regulation as a direct attack on their profit-making ability.

  • by (595837) <slashdot@adv[ ]net ['id.' in gap]> on Friday April 18, 2014 @04:38AM (#46786019) Journal

    The best answer would be a Net Gun.

    From market [] or DIY []. That's $400 or $60-$80.

    I think many of the catched drone parts can be salvaged, after the fall.

  • by marsu_k (701360) on Friday April 18, 2014 @09:09AM (#46786811)

    My sister-in-law works developing LED lamps. She's a biologist, was headhunted from the university after her PhD (that was about how different types of UV light affect plant growth) by some engineers. Basically what she does is she tests various configurations of LED lights and fixtures, checks how they affect plant growth, tells the engineers to build "that one". Rinse and repeat.

    What she's told me, and I have no reason to doubt this as she's not trying to sell me anything (and the fact that she's very proud of her work ethics), they're getting very much better results than with HIDs. With much less power consumption, obviously. Now, they specifically haven't tested cannabis, but I have a hard time believing the light requirements would be so drastically different than from other very light-needy plants.

    The thing is though, they're not yet selling to consumers, just to large commercial greenhouses. The company is still early stages. And she's been unwilling to loan me a unit for test purposes, dammit ;) But I'm willing to bet in a few years HIDs will no longer be the choice, at least when it comes to power consumption and heat; I expect the lights will be quite pricey, at least initially.

  • by Sloppy (14984) on Friday April 18, 2014 @11:26AM (#46787697) Homepage Journal

    Legalizing weed would take some money/power away from cartels which is always a good thing.

    It's not a good thing, if your financial interests are aligned with the cartels.

    If I'm on Al Capone's payroll and you ask for my opinion of the 21st Amendment, I'm going to say it's a bad idea.

How often I found where I should be going only by setting out for somewhere else. -- R. Buckminster Fuller