Addicts Found Working as Slaves on Pot Plantation

By Fionna Agomuoh 03/14/12

A paramilitary gang in eastern Russia rounded up local addicts and forced them to work on a marijuana farm.

The 20 captives have now been freed. Photo via

Twenty people—most of them addicts and alcoholics—have been found working as slaves on a cannabis plantation in far eastern Russia. The plantation was ruled over by a "paramilitary unit," and raiding cops found a large stash of weaponry, as well as night-vision goggles, binoculars and radios, according to Russian media. The drug-dealing overseers brought local addicts to the plantation and subjected them to beatings if they refused to work. They also prevented them from contacting relatives in the outside world. Police also discovered 80 sacks of dried marijuana, weighing 880 pounds, which they say had been harvested for local buyers in Primorye province. Five alleged overseers have been arrested, along with the operation's suspected organizer; aged between 27 and 35, they all have previous convictions including theft, robbery, armed robbery and drug offenses.

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Fionna Agomuoh is a tech writer and product reviewer, as well as the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Fionna previously worked at several media companies, including Newsweek Media Group and Business Insider. Find her on Linkedin or follow her on Twitter.