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Deputies bust up house full of pot

Officers seize 197 plants in second SCV marijuana raid this week

Posted: September 2, 2009 8:40 p.m.
Updated: September 3, 2009 4:30 a.m.

A Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy cuts the stalk of a marijuana plant found in the artificially-lit garage of a Saugus house on Wednesday. Authorities took an estimated $197,000 worth of the drug from what investigators described as a sophisticated grow operation.

Santa Clarita Valley sheriff’s deputies made their second pot-grow raid in less than a week Wednesday, netting more than 200 marijuana plants worth an estimated $530,000 in the unrelated busts.

Deputies arrested Sonny Greenback, 51, of Saugus, for investigation of felony marijuana cultivation and electricity theft. He was being held in lieu of $30,000 bail.

Sheriff’s deputies, tipped off by a neighbor, found the 197 plants as they served a search warrant at the home in the 22000 block of Alamogordo Drive. Detectives, who asked not to be identified, said the grow operation was remarkably sophisticated and the plants were worth about $1,000 apiece — or $197,000.

Greenback had been siphoning off electricity using illegal wiring to power the garage growhouse, but detectives weren’t sure how much or for how long.

The distinct scent of marijuana could be smelled from across the street as deputies cut up the plants and took them out of the house in black plastic bags.

On Monday, deputies arrested Lawrence Meyer, 56, and Luz Meyer, 36, of Castaic, after detectives found 18 marijuana plants and dozens of jars filled with the drug in and around their home there, sheriff’s deputies said in a statement.

In that bust, detectives found 17 fully grown pot plants and 72 jars of marijuana — worth an estimated $330,000 — along with two rifles, two shotguns and two hand guns, the statement said.



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