$3.25 Million In Pot Seized From 2 Homes
July 6, 2005
Traffic Stop Leads To Drug Seizure
CHICAGO -- Police said an estimated $3.25 million in marijuana was seized from two Southwest Side homes Tuesday night.
Officers from the police Special Operations Section arrested two men when they allegedly found drugs at a residence in the 6400 block of South Mozart Street and at another home in the 3600 block of West 56th Street, according to police News Affairs Officer Amina Greer.
The officers, who were patrolling in the Chicago Lawn District, curbed a vehicle for a traffic stop around 8 p.m. Tuesday near the intersection of 54th Street and Lawndale Avenue, according to Greer.
During the stop, police learned about a hydroponics lab, used for growing marijuana at a residence on 56th Street, Greer said.
After acquiring consent to search the lab, the officers found 14 kg of marijuana worth an estimated street value of $250,000, she said. Police also seized four guns at the residence and arrested Cesar Garcia, 26, according to Greer.
Greer was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance and production of cannabis plants.
Upon further investigation, the officers learned about a $3 million marijuana stash at the Mozart Street residence, Greer said.
Officers from the unit arrested Joel Vasquez-Torres, 35, at about 1 a.m. Wednesday, and gathered 555 pounds of marijuana bricks worth an estimated $3 million, Greer said.
Vasquez-Torres was charged with felony possession of cannabis.
Both men were in custody at the Chicago Lawn District Station, at 3515 W. 63rd St., at 4:20 a.m. according to a district lieutenant, who asked not to be named.
The lieutenant said the two men most likely knew one another but were unaware early Wednesday that either had been arrested.