Sunday, 24 June 2012

Police confronted by alligator having a bath on cannabis raid in Cheshire

From the outside, it looked just like a normal suburban semi, but when the police raided the three-bedroom family home they weren’t expecting to find something altogether deadly lurking in the bathroom.

A 2.4m (8ft) alligator splashing around in the bath is what ‘greeted’ officers acting on a tip-off about a cannabis factory.

They also found a poisonous king cobra, three monocled cobras and a rattlesnake after a series of raids on shops and properties nearby.

Wildlife officers and specialist reptile handling staff were brought in to deal with the animals and they are now being cared for elsewhere.

Yesterday, a 33-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of cultivating cannabis, abstracting electricity and possessing dangerous wild animals.

He was released on police bail pending further enquiries.

Insp Dave Gordon, of Cheshire Police, said some of the animals seized were ‘potentially lethal’.

He added: ‘This operation was initiated by information we received from members of the community.

‘We were concerned for the safety of the public, so swift action was taken.’

The raids on Friday took place in the Cheshire towns of Runcorn, Widnes and Warrington.

They also uncovered some minor breaches of legislation under the Pet Animals Act.

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