by DAISY SAMPSON [email protected]
PJ police have uncovered a cannabis factory near Lisbon during their investigation into the kidnapping of 26-year old father of two James Ross in early October.
The factory, allegedly run by a British gang, was found in the municipality of Montijo, located east of Lisbon after a joint investigation stemming from the kidnapping involving the PJ police, the National Counter Terrorism Unit, the police science laboratory and the National unit for combating drug trafficking.
A statement from the PJ police said: “A joint task force has dismantled a sophisticated laboratory for the production of cannabis sativia, a product created through the use of complex lighting systems, air conditioning and irrigation.”
The statement continued: “The production at the laboratory operated continuously through an automated system, which resulted in the production of a cannabis drug high in levels of the active ingredient THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), which is four times stronger than traditional cannabis.”
The scale of the laboratory led the PJ to describe the factory as being “dedicated to the production and processing of narcotics on a large scale” and the gang is believed by police to have controlled the entire process from creating the drugs at a high monthly capacity all the way up to the final marketing of the narcotics at an international level.
The four British men held by police in connection with the brutal kidnapping, all between the ages of 24 and 47, have been charged by police with kidnapping, serious bodily harm, theft, criminal association and international drug trafficking.
Police have described the 13-day ordeal of James Ross from Wick in Scotland as involving “unimaginable acts of torture” which included the amputation of an ear, fingers and toes, numerous burns and other forms of abuse described as being “all exceptionally painful”.
According to reports in the British media, James Ross was able to confirm the identities of his kidnappers to police after listening to voice recordings of the four men who held him.
James Ross posted on a social networking site that he was “getting better by the day”.
Investigations into the case by the PJ continue.