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Man faces charges after home searched

A so-called "grow house" bust in the Florida city of Cape Coral has resulted in a Feb. 27 seizure of marijuana with an estimated street value of $1 million, authorities said. While neighbors reported that a strange smell emanated from the home, they told a local media outlet that they were surprised to hear that an alleged $1 million marijuana growing operation was active close by.

Cape Coral Police point to evidence that the occupant of a home on NE 8th Place was stealing electricity as providing a break in the case. Marijuana grow houses are often involved in electricity theft, the source noted, to power the lamps and systems needed to grow the plants. A search warrant was obtained, and the significant and "high-tech" operation involving the marijuana was discovered, according to reports. Mylar-insulated rooms with lighting, watering systems, wiring supports and temperature controls were noted and photographed by authorities during the search of the residence.

Detectives reportedly seized 60 marijuana plants and harvested marijuana buds with a collective weight of 436.3 pounds. A 40-year-old man was taken into custody and charged with marijuana trafficking of an amount greater than 25 lbs or 300 plants, marijuana cultivation and possession of drug paraphernalia. Detectives stated that other individuals may still be taken into custody in the case, and a sergeant for the Cape Coral police said it was one of the biggest grow-house busts in years in the community.

Individuals charged with drug offenses may retain criminal defense lawyers who are aware of prevailing laws and practices in Florida. Sometimes, an attorney for a person facing charges might seek to enter into plea negotiations with prosecutors, in which charges may sometimes be reduced in exchange for a guilty plea on the part of the defendant, if the prosecution's case is strong and, as in this case, the evidence against the defendant is well-documented.

Source: NBC 2, "Man arrested in $1M grow house bust", February 28, 2014

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