Hydroponic Pot Bust Nets 6,000 Plants, 142 Arrests Statewide

Categories: News
It's no secret that Florida's got quite the greenhouse-grown marijuana industry. Our own Francisco Alvarado wrote about Florida's pot-growin' ways back in 2007, when the Sunshine State officially became the second-leading pot producer in the nation.

Today, federal prosecutors announced the end of a statewide operation targeting residential grow houses -- the suburban and rural homes filled with hydroponic pot farms at the center of New Times' story.

The final numbers look impressive: 6,828 marijuana plants seized, 45 firearms confiscated and 142 people arrested. More than 2,500 of those plants and 73 arrests came in South Florida, where the feds shut down 620 grow houses.

Acting U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Sloman pitched the operation in terms of violence prevention, noting that "grow house operations often lead to an increase in violence, crime and hazardous conditions to surrounding neighborhoods."

Just to put the operation in perspective, back in 2007 authorities confiscated more than 37,000 plants and shuttered 511 grow houses.

So if you see a suspiciously well-light basement in your neighborhood, there may still be some mary-jane production in your hood.

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