Danger! High voltage: German customs bods burn half-tonne of weed in power station

Marijuana of unknown origin sent up in smoke

smokestack

A power station in Olching, Bavaria, blazed like it was 4/20 yesterday after German authorities used it to burn around 550kg of marijuana.

The weed, Südeutsche Zeitung reported, could have provided close to 3.8 million joints. It was discovered by the Munich Customs Department in a Serbian truck south of Nuremberg in December last year. The paper said the driver has been detained.

The Customs Laboratory's tests revealed that the pot was of a particularly potent variety, with 16 per cent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, the active ingredient). Officials said they will seize Mary J when it is 12 per cent THC or above. According to spokesperson Christian Schüttenkopf, it would have been worth several million euros if sold.

The half-tonne of herb required a hefty incinerator to destroy it all in one go. Because of Christmas, rubbish isn't being collected as regularly so the power station had plenty of spare room it could let the customs officers use for their own disposal.

While medicinal use of marijuana is legal in Germany, only weed which can be traced back to its source is permitted for use. While the authorities suspected the country of origin was Albania, this was not enough information to save the devil's lettuce from the flames.

Plant manager Thomas König said: "The material is used to generate heating and electricity for the people in the region. It's a benefit for the general public, so to speak."

With the incinerator running at 900-1,000oC, all organic compounds, including the THC, were burned away, which meant there were no side effects for the locals.

The Südeutsche Zeitung report concluded, perhaps with a note of disappointment: "Nobody got high in Olching." ®




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