Officials with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration say that the number of indoor marijuana plants in California has quadrupled in the last three years.
Many of these plants have occurred in middle-class and upper-class suburbs. Buyers have bought homes here because the financing of these homes are cheap. They have been remodeled to build farms which are built indoors. These indoor pot operation uses sophisticated irrigation, ventilation and lighting. This structure can contain 1,800 plants.
This marijuana boom has brought in more than $100 million worth of pot last year. These homes were transformed into illicit greenhouses with blacked-out windows, sophisticated irrigation, high powered and timed lighting and ventilation devices to hide the smell of the plants. These homes are occupied by organized crime groups and are progressively creating marijuana factories.
Local authorities have discovered at least six indoor suburban pot farms in just the last month. Officials say that suburban homes are attractive to growers because they draw little attention. these homes are built throughout upscale neighborhoods with a large Asian population. this includes Diamond Bar and Chino Hills.
The Los Angeles and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s department have arrested half a dozen people and expect more arrest as the investigation continue.
Since last August, officials in Northern California have arrested 16 people and seized 50 suburban pot homes and 24,000 pounds of marijuana linked to an Asian organized crime syndicate operating in Canada and the U.S.
The discovery of up to20,000 plants growing in a hilly park alongside million-dollar homes in gated Mission Viejo neighborhood. Authorities said that they discovered the crop–which was the largest in the county’s history. Law enforcement say that the crops are hidden so well that they are hard to find.
Authorities worry that home farms can attract drug violence to a normally peaceful neighborhood. State officials have been receiving repots of crimes connected to the indoor marijuana operations. There have been robberies of these indoor plants.
Officials are not encouraging people to take the law into their own hands. They say that neighbors can keep their eyes open for suspicious signs. Tall tale signs are: homes where trash cans are never taken out to the street, where overgrown plants are never trimmed or where the gardener or pool caretaker never comes.
Some pot dealers in Northern California are realizing that they have to change their way of living so that they won’t be discovered by the law. So what do they do? They hire gardeners to bring out the trash and cut their grass. This makes it look more authentic.
Gang members operating out of San Francisco set up operations in the Stockton, Modesto and Sacramento suburbs. These pot farms are nationwide and the seizures have soared.