RCMP seize 265 plants in Alberni grow-op bust
A man and woman in Port Alberni are facing drug and weapons charges after RCMP took down their grow-op.
The bust happened on Jan. 18 when police raided a residence in the 3700 block of 14th Avenue, RCMP Cpl Jen Allan said.
Police seized 265 marijuana plants growing inside the house and in a garage on the property. Police also seized scales and a shotgun, Allan said.
The crop was valued at approximately $1,000 per plant but the price can fluctuate so no hard dollar figure could be applied, Allan said.
A 41-year-old Port Alberni man and a 29-year-old woman from Royston, B.C. were arrested then released.
Charges recommended against the pair include production of marijuana and possession for the purposes of trafficking. The man also faces a weapon possession charge, which violates a previous court order against him. No theft of hydro was involved, Allan said.
In December 2012, police searched a residence for drugs in the Sproat Lake area. Police found marijuana plants but their quantity was consistent with the medical license that allowed their growth, Allan said.
Grow-ops have the potential to attract violence to a neighbourhood because they are susceptible to extortion and grow-op robberies, also known as grow-rips.
Common signs of a grow-op include:
- Residents at home in spurts
- Residence access through garage only
- Going from no visitors to frequent visitors for short periods
- Windows covered with dark plastic or newspaper
- Skunk-like odour of marijuana
- Little or no garbage or unusual items(e.g. pots and soil, fertilizer containers, wiring, PVC piping)
- Hydro meter tampered with or bypassed.