Utility Theft Fuels Copious Illegal Marijuana Cultivation, Duo Busted

Utility Theft Fuels Copious Illegal Marijuana Cultivation, Duo Busted
Photo: Li Jinhai and Zheng Yuxiang

FRENCH VALLEY – They planted a seed, then another, and another – to the tune of over 400 tender seedlings. A budding crop was growing, needing light and temperature control in order to thrive in a temperate, albeit enclosed greenhouse-type location.

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inside the grow house

Wholly concealed to prying eyes, this highly-aromatic operation was camouflaged in plain sight because it was an illegal marijuana grow-house. Stolen utilities fueled the massive project smack in the middle of a residential neighborhood – until it was nipped in the bud.

The single-family home in French Valley Unincorporated Area was cased by deputies from the Southwest Station’s Special Enforcement Team. The month-long surveillance culminated in a search warrant obtained for the residence on the 30100 Block of Slate Street.

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another view

“Upon serving the search warrant, deputies located more than 400 marijuana plants inside of the home,” said Sergeant J. Wade. “In addition, hazardous illegal modification had been made to the residential electrical panel, which enabled the theft of utilities to occur.”

The green-thumbed pair of cultivating opportunists, Li Jinhai (54) and Zheng Yuxiang (49) both from Lawrenceville, GA, were taken into custody on 07/01/2019 at 9:40 AM. They were arrested on charges of Felony Theft of Utilities, Conspiracy, Illegal Cultivation of Marijuana and Felony Vandalism.

The duo is booked and housed in the plant-free Cois Byrd Detention Center.

Anyone with information regarding investigation #SW191820025 is encouraged to contact the Southwest Sheriff Station’s Special Enforcement Team at (951) 696-3000. Or, submit a tip using the Sheriff’s CrimeTips online form.

Utility Theft Fuels Copious Illegal Marijuana Cultivation, Duo Busted was last modified: July 9th, 2019 by admin
Categories: Riverside

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