A Portland police photo shows a marijuana manufacturing operation that was one of several grow houses specifically renovated for large-scare marijuana grows, many of which were not occupied by any residents.
Arrests break up ‘for-profit’ network
The Portland Police Bureau’s Drugs and Vice Division concluded an investigation into a major drug trafficking organization last week by serving search warrants on 12 residences and a business.
The investigation focused on a large scale marijuana manufacturing and distribution network. Marijuana was being cultivated in several houses specifically renovated to accommodate large-scale marijuana grows and many were not occupied by any residents.
Police said the drug traffickers were highly organized and the operation was highly profitable with no connection to medical marijuana.
Officers learned that in some of the grow houses electricity was being diverted directly from the power poles into the houses to run the network of transformers, lights and filtration systems. The power diversions presented a danger to the neighborhood as a substantial fire hazard.
Each year the Police Bureau receives a number of complaints about marijuana grow houses and associated odor, foot and vehicle traffic and violence. The violence is of particular concern as thieves are committing home-invasion robberies to steal marijuana and cash from growers, police said.
Evidence seized in this case included over $74,000 in cash; over 2,400 marijuana plants with an estimated street value of nearly $2.5 million; nearly 200 pounds of finished marijuana bud with an estimated value of nearly $600,000; and marijuana growing equipment valuing more than $200,000.
The six persons arrested in the case are Kung Mo Chin, 29; Jin Yu Chen, 35; Wen Han Chen, 39; Shao Quan Ou, 40; Zhong Dong Ou, 42; and Herman Man Shun Chan, 50.