Security forces busted a marijuana plantation in northern Lebanon and seized its illicit seedlings, the National News Agency reported.
On Monday, a patrol of the Internal Security Forces’ Information Branch raided several greenhouses in the village of Bejdarfel in Batroun, North Lebanon, that were being used to cultivate marijuana.
A force from the Anti-Narcotics Office in the North arrived immediately after being informed of the illegal activity, arrested the owner of the plantation, identified as “A.A.,” and destroyed the seized seedlings in place.
The greenhouses contained around 110 marijuana seedlings.
In addition to the illicit plants, the patrol seized an unlicensed military-grade weapon that was found in the detainee’s home, in addition to an amount of packaged and ready-to-sell hashish.
These were handed over to the Batroun gendarmerie platoon, along with the detainee.
It’s worth noting that the prevailing economic crisis and the accompanying devaluation of the Lebanese pound against the US dollar have taken a toll on the illegal cannabis trade that is infamously predominant in the Beqaa Valley.
According to the New York Times, Beqaa farmers who would normally rely on cannabis as their main source of income have turned this year to alternative crops, such as apples, due to the effects of the economic meltdown.
However, there has yet to be an implementation of a strategy to reap the economic benefits of cannabis, which faces numerous challenges, including the apparent autonomous nature of the Beqaa region.
*Photo used for illustrative purposes only
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