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Police bust several marijuana grow-ops in Nov., a number of charges laid
ALERT's Green Team seized 2,233 marijuana plants valued at over $2 million in November at a property in Round Lake, located approximately 100 kilometres west of Edmonton in Parkland County. SUPPLIED.
Linda Hoang, CTV Edmonton
Published Tuesday, December 4, 2012 10:59AM MST
Police were busy weeding out several marijuana grow operations in Edmonton and northern Alberta in November, with more than 2,000 plants seized and charges laid against several people.
The Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams’ Green Team, made up of members of the Edmonton Police Service and RCMP, seized 2,233 marijuana plants valued at over $2 million at the beginning of the month at a rural property in Round Lake, located approximately 100 kilometres west of Edmonton in Parkland County.
In that case, police say they had uncovered a sophisticated grow operation that included high-intensity lights, commercial-forced air furnaces with cooling units, a natural gas bypass that ran underground and was connected to two industrial generators, powering the grow-op.
Of the 2,233 plants seized, nearly 800 were ready for harvest, with a potential yield of 56 kg of processed marijuana. Police also seized $125,000 in growing equipment, a vehicle, and a skid steer.
Mohamed Mustafa, 32, of Edmonton, Kenneth Youngman, 31, of Edmonton, and Leslie Sherart, 43, of Leduc, were charged with production of marijuana, possession for the purpose of trafficking, and theft of natural gas.
In mid-November, two men already on bail stemming from a previous investigation were charged again after police executed a search warrant at a central Edmonton address. Officers seized 62 plants from a small marijuana grow-op and also found another small grow-op while searching a unit in downtown Edmonton.
In that case, Quyen Chen, 52, and Minh Chung, 36, were charged with production of marijuana, possession for the purpose of trafficking and breach of recognizance.
In the last week of November, the Green Team executed search warrants at five different north Edmonton properties, all of which housed marijuana grow-ops.
In total, police seized 411 plants valued at more than $500,000, 10 kg of processed marijuana with an estimated street value of more than $100,000 and $25,000 in cash and a vehicle.
Grand Luu, 27, and Vincent Wong, 39, are charged with production of a controlled substance, possession for the purpose of trafficking, and possession of property obtained by crime exceeding $5,000.
Chi Han Chiu, 35, was charged with production of a controlled substance and possession for the purpose of trafficking.
Charges are still pending against the two women related to that investigation.
In the same week, the team assisted Strathcona County RCMP with an 84-plant marijuana grow-op in Sherwood Park. That case led to drug-trafficking charges against David Chevalier, a 28-year-old Sherwood Park resident.
To report suspicious activity or a suspected grow operation in your community, contact your local police department or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Marijuana seized by ALERT's Green Team at a grow operation at an Edmonton property in November. SUPPLIED.
A photo taken at a marijuana grow operation discovered at a rural property in Round Lake, located approximately 100 kilometres west of Edmonton in Parkland County.