Investigators from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's Marijuana Dispensary Task Force issued a search warrant Wednesday at a strip mall located in Canyon County, a district in Santa Clarita just north of of Los Angeles.
Deputy Juanita Navarro-Suarez said in a news release investigators found sophisticated indoor cannabis grow operation in several of the strip mall units. Carbon filters and elaborate air conditioning systems were also in place according to investigators to avoid odor from being detected.
“An undetermined amount of U.S. currency and 2,484 marijuana plants at various stages of growth were seized,” Navarro-Suarez said. “An additional 200 pounds of finished product (dried marijuana buds) and 50 pounds of edible THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) infused products, such as cookies, were seized.”
The value of the cannabis plants is an estimated $6.21 million and the dried marijuana and other products were valued at $500,000. The LASD was informed by a citizen informant who called to report illegal narcotics in the area while neighboring business owners reported a strong skunky smell from the storefront.
Three men were detained at the scene but two were later released. The third male, 28-year-old George Tunis of Los Angeles was arrested for suspicion of possessing marijuana for sales. He was later booked at Santa Clarita Valley Station and released posting a $30,000 bail. The bust comes just week's before November's ballot that California will be voting on Prop 64 to legalize marijuana.