Deputies arrested 10 people and seized thousands of marijuana plants during a bust of various marijuana grow operations in the Hemet and San Jacinto area allegedly tied to a drug trafficking ring, sheriff’s officials said.
Deputies executed search warrants at nine residences on Saturday and in total seized 8,736 marijuana plants, 700 pounds of processed marijuana, four firearms and $64,000 in cash, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.
Seven of the nine residences were allegedly converted into illegal grow operations and their electrical meters bypassed to steal power, sheriff’s officials said.
Southern California Edison estimated that over $100,000 worth of electricity was stolen.
Ten people were arrested during the sweep, including Hemet residents David Barrera, 31, Nasbit Gomez, 26, Luis Gomez, 41 and Barnaby Amaya, 34.
Also arrested were San Jacinto residents Sal Nolasco, 24, Mariela Del Billar, 33, Adriana Alvarez, 51, Noe Lopez, 35 and Francisco Vasquez, 40, as well as Norwalk resident Sandra Macias, 41.