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California

Edison tip leads to $12-million marijuana bust, authorities say

Police seized more than $12 million in marijuana tied to an alleged drug-manufacturing ring after being tipped by a Southern California Edison employee.

Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies have seized more than $12 million in marijuana from an alleged drug manufacturing ring thanks to a tip from Southern California Edison.

On Thursday morning, detectives served search warrants to buildings in El Sereno, Lincoln Heights and East L.A. after an Edison employee pointed them to a potential growhouse operation that was apparently stealing electricity.

Detectives said the buildings were linked to even smaller marijuana operations in Walnut, San Dimas and the city of Industry.

In all, detectives said they seized 23,725 marijuana plants and 200 to 300 pounds of processed marijuana worth an estimated $12.6 million on the streets.

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Authorities estimate that the operation stole the equivalent of $2.2 million worth of electricity over the last 10 years and that the operation could generate $72.6 million worth of marijuana annually.

Nine people were arrested in connection with the searches and booked on drug and theft charges. 

Joseph.serna@latimes.com

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Twitter: @josephserna


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