Vast underground grow house busted
DELEON SPRINGS, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - On Tuesday, Volusia County deputies found one of the most elaborate marijuana growing operations ever seen in the county's history, according to investigators.
Authorities were responding to complaints of unusual activity around a home located at 1260 Cherokee Drive in DeLeon Springs. The homeowner returned while law enforcement officers were on scene, but he attempted to flee as he was approached by deputies.
Upon being granted permission to search the residence by the homeowner, deptuies discovered a workbench in the garage which had a trapdoor built into its base. Under that door was a hole in the concrete floor that led to an 65-foot underground tunnel.
The crawlspace tunnel opened up into an underground bedroom complete with a bed, monitors hooked up to surveillance cameras, a computer and loaded weapons.
Another room opened up into a fully equipped grow room with air conditioning, irrigation and a wall panel bristling with wires and electrical outlets. Yet another grow room was found beyond the first one.
Orestes Olmo, 38, was arrested and transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail in Daytona Beach Monday night charged with aggravated assault, resisting arrest without violence, possession of a concealed weapon, and possession of a stolen weapon.
On Tuesday he was also charged with cultivation of marijuana with intent to distribute, maintain a residence to manufacture marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Also on Tuesday, investigators obtained a search warrant for a storage unit in Orange City rented by Olmo. About eight pounds of processed marijuana was discovered there.
MY FOX ORLANDO
Tuesday, May 05, 2009