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Thousands Of Plants Seized In Raid At Illegal Marijuana Grow Site In Alta; 6 People Arrested

PLACER COUNTY (CBS13) — An illegal marijuana grow at a rural property in Placer County has been raided by authorities.

The Placer County Sheriff’s office says, back on Aug. 5, deputies with their Special Operations Unit served a search warrant at a marijuana grow site in Alta. The site was on a hillside leading directly into the North Fork of the American River, deputies say.

At the site, about 2,400 marijuana plants, 400 recently harvested pot plants, and about 200 pounds of processed marijuana was found.

Deputies also discovered a “considerable” amount of chemicals around the property. With the grow site being on a hill, the sheriff’s office says it would have been inevitable for some chemicals to wash down when it rains and pollute the river.

Several suspects who were maintaining the site were found living in tents at the property, deputies say. In total, six people – all from out of the area – were arrested in connection to the grow: 30-year-old Jose Checo, 22-year-old Humberto Chomo, 38-year-old Cerillo Delacruz, 23-year-old Onorio Delacruz, 25-year-old Meliton Hernandez-Velasco and 19-year-old Adrian Regino. All are facing numerous drug charges.

An illegal marijuana grow at a rural property in Placer County has been raided by authorities.

Illegal marijuana grow busted in Pueblo West

Pueblo County Sheriff’s deputies on Thursday busted an alleged illegal marijuana grow operation at a Pueblo West home that also was the site of a 2016 bust.

Deputies were tipped off by the home’s electrical system alterations which were bypassing the electric meter, said Gayle Perez, sheriff’s office public information officer. Deputies attempted to contact the residents of the home, located in the 11000 block of Camino Santiago, on Thursday afternoon but were unsuccessful.

“However, they did detect a strong odor of marijuana coming from the home, indicating there was possibly a grow inside. Detectives sought and executed a search warrant of the home seizing 76 marijuana plants worth an estimated $76,000,” Perez said.

State law allows only 12 marijuana plants per household.

Inside the home, detectives found three separate grow rooms in the basement, grow lights and an irrigation system. Detectives seized the plants and the equipment.

The home was condemned due to the extensive alterations made to the electrical system. It is unknown if anyone was living in the home.

No arrests have been made, but they may forthcoming, Perez said.

The home was used for an illegal grow in 2016 and was one of five homes Drug Enforcement Administration officials and Pueblo County Sheriff’s deputies executed search warrants on after receiving a tip from Texas authorities of the possible grow operation.

“This was nothing more than a black market grow house,” Pueblo County Sheriff Kirk Taylor said. “People are moving into these homes that were already set up for marijuana grows and are growing product that is going strictly to the black market.”

Taylor said the Pueblo West bust, along with an unrelated bust on October 9 at a home in rural Avondale, demonstrate illegal grows are still prevalent in Pueblo County.

“This continues to be an issue in our community,” Taylor said. “We thank the public and others who are reporting when they see suspicious activity surrounding possible grows.

We will continue to remain diligent investigating those reports,” he said.

Pueblo County Sheriff’s deputies bust an illegal marijuana grow operation in Pueblo West seizing $76,000 worth of cannabis.