Search

Police find 20 pythons and samurai swords in Highbury flat drugs raid

PUBLISHED: 06:58 02 August 2012

Pythons, tarantulas and swords were found in the raid in Highbury

Pythons, tarantulas and swords were found in the raid in Highbury

2010 Getty Images

Police raiding a flat to search for drugs got a big surprise when they stumbled upon a zoo of exotic creatures – including up to 20 pythons – and a collection of samurai swords.

Officers from the Highbury West Safer Neighbourhoods team found large tanks containing tarantulas and pythons – one of which was 18 feet long – in the property on the Stephens Ink Estate, off Gillespie Road, Highbury.

They also discovered a fearsome arsenal of bladed weapons, including ninja stars, knives and four samurai swords.

Pc Neil Hodgman, of the Highbury West Safer Neighbourhoods team, said: “I have never been involved in a warrant like it.

“There were huge heated tanks dotted all over the place that seemed to take up most of the room. There were three or four really big pythons, one 18 feet long. These things were massive, they had heads as big as fists.”

Two officers taking part in the operation on Tuesday morning were so scared of the animals they opted to stand outside and wait.

As the team forced entry to the flat, they were confronted by two dogs which had to be controlled with shields and fire extinguishers.

Pc Hodgman added: “We knew the dogs would be there, but we didn’t know anything at all about the reptiles.” The officer said the animals appeared to be well looked after.

Residents were amazed at what was in the flat. Paul Richards, 41, of the Stephens Ink Estate, said: “It’s a bit of a shocker. You never know what’s behind someone else’s door.”

Bags containing cannabis and cash were seized in the raid, but the animals and weapons were left. Two men, aged 47 and 23, were arrested for possession with intent to supply and have been bailed to return to police.

Latest Islington News Stories

Yesterday, 17:49

Police are hoping to track down a heroic teenager who saved the life of an old man by performing CPR – before casually walking off.

Yesterday, 17:10

The photo has been long in the making, amid growing tension between colleagues.

Yesterday, 15:01

The Alternative Clothes Show returned to Crouch End on Saturday as City and Islington College joined models to showcase outfits crafted using recycled materials.

Yesterday, 14:48

Bodies were strewn over the pavement after a car ploughed into pedestrians in Essex Road on Saturday night, a pubgoer said.

Yesterday, 12:40

Nine years on from Ben Kinsella’s horrific murder, his family is as determined as ever to fight knife crime. The Gazette speaks to his dad George.

Yesterday, 08:18

A fifth person has been arrested after a car ploughed into a group of people queuing outside the Old Queen’s Head in Essex Road on Saturday night.

Yesterday, 07:00

The average Islington Council worker was taking 20 sick days a year, an investigation revealed.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Budding mathematicians at Drayton Park Primary School blew away the competition in the first number-crunching challenge hosted by exclusive boarding school Christ’s Hospital.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now