Police Stumble Upon Illegal Costa Mesa Marijuana Grow Operation
An illegal marijuana grow operation was discovered near John Wayne Airport in Costa Mesa on Tuesday, September 15th when police responded to a routine eviction call. While the owners of the operation are still at large, officers were quite surprised to stumble upon 59 plants and everything needed to make them grow.
The Orange County Sheriff’s deputies were sent to evict the tenant around 12:00 in the afternoon. When the sheriff’s deputies arrived at the scene, instead of finding the said tenant, the office complex in the 3100 block of Airway Avenue seemed deserted, with no one answering the door. After a locksmith was called to open the door and the deputies successfully entered the premises, they came to realize that the tenant had already vacated the site.
However, the place was not emptied in its entirety. The officers discovered a scene that implied those who left did so in a hurry. The tenant had left a large number of marijuana plants along with, according to authorities, the usual equipment needed for growing.
After the deputies made the discovery, Costa Mesa police were called to the scene and were accompanied by a special investigation unit. The unit discovered a total of 59 marijuana plants at the site. According to police officials, the grow operation occupies two office areas in an industrial property.
Authorities are now trying to locate the last tenant of the office space. So far nobody was arrested in regard to this case and the investigation remains open.
In the event of finding the person responsible for the marijuana grow operation, under Health and Safety Code 11358 any such action of planting and cultivation is regarded a felony punishable by up to 3 years in jail. Evidence such as scales, cash, “commercial” packaging materials, etc. are often interpreted by the authorities as signs that those involved had intentions to sell.
However, if the defendants are able to prove that the cultivation was for personal use only, they may be eligible for deferred entry of judgment under Penal Code 1000, depending upon all circumstances involved. Inclusion in PC 1000 usually requires that the defendant has no prior conviction for any offense involving controlled substances and no conviction for a felony of any kind within five years prior to the alleged commission of the charged offense.
As California continues to change laws regarding marijuana, those who consume the plant for their own personal use are often uninformed. This has led to countless marijuana users who break laws that they have no idea they are breaking, resulting in infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies for those who are regularly law-abiding citizens.
If you or your loved one are facing charges for the possession, sale, transportation, or cultivation of marijuana and are in need of legal assistance, call (888) 250-2865 today to obtain a free case evaluation from a skilled drug crime attorney.