The team behind tackling cannabis grows and linked exploitation in Rotherham have won an award for their outstanding work and efforts.
The Rotherham ‘Op Grow’ team scooped the prize for the ‘Police Team’ award at the Cutlers’ Company Police and Fire Service Awards, which recognise and honour exemplary actions within the two emergency services organisations.
The awards provide recognition for those who have gone above and beyond in their duty.
Operation Grow launched last year (2021) and is a partnership operation to target and disrupt those involved in growing and supplying drugs to communities, with the profits used for funding organised crime.
The operation was launched by South Yorkshire Police and Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC) in response to frequent power cuts in Ferham and Eastwood, which were thought to be, in part, caused by the amount of illegal cannabis set-ups running off bypassed electricity.
Since then officers have continued their efforts across the district, and have executed just under 100 warrants and recovered over 11,000 cannabis plants and equipment with a street value of over 11 million pound.
On 18 July the Op Grow Team attended the Cutlers’ Awards held at the Cutlers Hall in Sheffield.
T/Chief Inspector of Rotherham Neighbourhoods Sharron Wood said: “I am extremely proud of the team, not only for winning the award but for the results they have achieved in such a short space of time.
“The Operation Grow team have grown in strength and this has been reflected in their results as we continue to disrupt criminality and put people before court to be held responsible for their actions.
“We still have work to do; cannabis farms impact on the quality of life of local residents and businesses. Power outages, exploitation of vulnerable people, as well as the organised crime that brings fear and harm will not be tolerated.
“We want to make Rotherham a better, more enjoyable place to live and work.
“A huge congratulations to the team, I am pleased your work and efforts have been recognised.”
Photographed in the top photo is T/CI Sharron Wood, Rotherham Central Neighbourhood Team Sergeant Dean McLaughlin, PC’s Brooke Turner, Liam Morris, Harry Middleton, David Wilks and Community Protection Officers from RMBC Nicola Shakespeare and Jeremy Squires.
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