By Paul Kennedy
Criminal gangs from Việt Nam are running a vast network of illegal cannabis farms across the United Kingdom, with many trafficking unsuspecting children into Britain to carry out the dirty work.
ECPAT UK, one of the UK’s leading children’s rights organisations, says there has been a huge rise in the number of farms in recent years, with many using youngsters from Việt Nam as ‘gardeners’ to work in dangerous conditions.
In the past, cannabis was smuggled into the United Kingdom from mainland Europe but because the risks were too high, most is now cultivated in the UK.
And officials say it is Vietnamese gangs who are controlling the supply.
ECPAT’s work has uncovered horror stories of children trafficked from Việt Nam being beaten and threatened with death if they refuse to do as they are told.
Many are also arrested during police raids, and end