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Welsh Police Found an Industrial Weed Farm Next to Their Courthouse

Two Albanian guys, a ton of weed and an abandoned Welsh pub.

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If being the unwitting victim of human trafficking isn't bad enough, imagine reaching the country of your perceived salvation – Wales – only to discover that you were brought over to be a weed slave. Trafficking ruins the lives of thousands of men, women and children every year, but only two people (that we know of) were crafty enough to pay off their trafficking debt by cultivating herb.


Valdet Malluta, 20, and Ajet Gjuzi, 23, are two Albanian men who entered the UK seeking freedom and opportunity. Instead they found themselves broke, unable to qualify for government services and still in debt to their traffickers. So they got creative and tended to over a thousand succulent marijuana plants in a beautiful multifloor stone building called Pitman's Pub, once a humble dispensary of the only legal substance with withdrawal symptoms that can kill you (alcohol).

Authorities discovered that Pitman’s was actually a growhouse when one of them looked across the street on the 5th of September. That’s right, the growhouse was situated around the corner from Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court. When they were brought into custody, Malluta and Gjuzi claimed that they were being forced to engage in the illegal farming, and the police made a huge deal out of it in an effort to distract from the fact that they are really fucking terrible at their jobs. Malluta and Gjuzi were given two-year sentences and will be deported upon release. Whether the Albanians were telling the truth about their motives for growing weed under the cops' noses is immaterial as a point of law. But according to police, they were sitting on almost $400,000 worth of weed and there was evidence that they had cultivated multiple crops. Malluta's lawyer claimed his client was "afforded an opportunity by an organised crime group", and when he tried to quit because he realised what he was doing was illegal, "threats were made", according to Wales Online.


While at first it may seem a result of stupidity that these two men are now in prison, one has to wonder if the placement of their drug operation was carelessly or ingeniously calculated. If Walter White taught us anything, it's that the proprietor of a drug operation can hide in plain sight by acting normal his entire life and then doing horrible, unspeakable things as an alter ego – even if that alter ego is being hunted by his brother-in-law. It's just that simple.

Walter's story is not that much unlike a pair of Albanians fleeing persecution only to find themselves in search of a place to grow the weed that they will sell in order to keep from being killed by their bloodthirsty traffickers. Either way, there's no way you're not gonna be growing weed across the street from a courthouse within a week. But be careful, countries like the Netherlands are rolling out creative public-awareness campaigns to stem the rise of hidden-in-plain-sight "grow ops."


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