Law enforcement officials uncovered an illegal cannabis grow operation in Pueblo West that involved five residences, an enormous amount of pot plants and seven suspects which had recently relocated to Colorado from Florida in order to set up their multiple drug dens.
The Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office says investigators snatched up more than 1,900 pot plants and approximately $250,000 worth of equipment that the suspects were allegedly using to manufacture butane hash oil. The marijuana was estimated to be worth over 7 million dollars. In addition to the equipment and cannabis plants, local authorities and federal agents also discovered scales and packaging materials used for distributing their finished products on a massive scale. The authorities involved with the bust claim the seven individuals that were arrested were in cahoots (ya think?), and the manufactured goods were destined for Florida where they were ultimately being sold on the black market.
Gayle Perez, spokesperson for the Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office, says the investigators that conducted the raids on the five homes “found hundreds of marijuana plants in various states of growth, along with equipment used to make butane hash oil and a large-scale manufacturing area.”
Investigators also found a number of weapons during the bust. Furthermore, a lot of individuals that apparently had no involvement with the grow operations or hash oil manufacturing process were said to be living in the raided homes. In fact, the police say they discovered an elderly lady that used oxygen and a very young child living in one of the houses that was involved in the raids. Several of the people found living in the homes were detained for questioning, but in the end they were released without any charges having been filed against them.
According to Pueblo County Undersheriff J.R. Hall, illegal grow operations that are also manufacturing butane hash oil have the potential to pose a threat to the safety of the public, saying that law enforcement officials “were able to put a stop to a very large and dangerous operation that was going on in our county.”
The alleged Sinful 7 that were taken into custody included: Derek Breckbill, 25, Dennis Rodriguez, 45, Richard Sample, 33, Daniel Bingham, 27, Nathaniel Clawson, 30, Gary Bruce, 31, and Angel Rodriguez, 47.