Dutch police use mini helicopter to sniff out cannabis

29th April 2009, Comments 2 comments

A canna-chopper fitted with cameras and apparatus that can detect the smell of marijuana has successfully tracked down an illegal cannabis operation.

ACHTERHOEK – Police in the northeastern Achterhoek region Tuesday reveal the success of using an unmanned miniature helicopter to track down the illegal cultivation of cannabis.

The first flight of a newly-designed mini helicopter, or canna-chopper, fitted with cameras and a sniffer on Tuesday morning had already led to the discovery of a cannabis drying shed and a plant cutting facility, said police spokesman Anton de Ronde.

The canna-chopper is fitted with apparatus that takes air samples out of ventilator shafts and chimneys. A dedicated gas analyser is able to recognise traces of weed smell in the air samples.

Designed and built by Dutch police engineers, the mini helicopter, which can stay airborne for a maximum of eight hours, is used to track down indoor cannabis plantations.

In an interview with De Volkskrant, Johan Warmerdam of the anti-marijuana plantation squad said cannabis plantation is a huge industry worth as much as EUR 2 billion where 80 percent of the marijuana is exported.

The helicopters are not breaking the law as samples can be taken without entering the building, stressed the police.

Radio Netherlands / Expatica

2 Comments To This Article

  • Heintje Hoek posted:

    on 4th May 2009, 02:49:54 - Reply

    It really is sad to watch.
    This is my home country and I can tell for sure, that since all this preventing
    from marijuana started about 10 years ago. Things have only gone worse.Growing marijuana has become a somewhat dangerous thing in Holland. And people get killed over it now! This used to be the land of freedom and a great(do your thing just don`t bother me with it) mentality.
    But that is all just gone now, it really is sad to see it change like this.
  • Emmitt posted:

    on 30th April 2009, 00:24:21 - Reply

    It hurts to watch the Dutch go down the same road as America, spending millions on prohibition. Soon I think that complete prohibition will come to the Netherlands. The Police presence will be like that of some Scandanavian countries and in America --- overwhelming. What a buzzkill. I have to believe that soon there will be little police copters all over the place in Amsterdam.
    It is not my home country, so I can not say what is best for the Dutch. If the majority appreciate the police state, then that is that, I guess. It is a democratic choice, and I must live with that. But it is sad to watch........