Illegal operators have been secretly growing marijuana in quiet suburban homes. Neighbors told authorities they suspected nothing. An undercover drug task force in Hall County busted a sophisticated marijuana growing operation in six different neighborhoods between Gainesville, Flowery Branch and Hoschton.
Authorities seized about $7 million dollars worth of 1,500 marijuana and 300 lbs of processed marijuana. Apparently, the operation has been going on for several years, and operated by a family with at least eight members on it. The police only caught on with the secret operations when a tip was sent to them from someone who detected some suspicious activity in the neighborhood. The police then started an undercover surveillance operation on a house along Ashford Way in Gainesville.
The police then unearthed that the operations are a family affair, and the rest of the houses fell like dominoes.
The growers have been discovered to have originated from Vietnam but are staying in the country legally.
Authorities said the family marijuana operators tried their best to blend in with the community, with the outsides of the homes landscaped, while the insides were filled with wall to wall plants growing under lights.
Authorities said the illegal activities may have gone undetected for some time because the growers use big houses because there’s more spaces between neighbors, large spaces within to grow the plants, and it is not suspicious for big houses to use huge amount of electricity.
One of the houses clandestinely growing marijuana was located on Lake Lanier where many of the homes are vacation houses or those serving as summer rentals, so there’s less interaction with neighbors.
The police have expressed confidence that they have busted the entire ring, but for now it’s still hard to tell if there’s no more operations hiding behind the regularity and seeming comfort of quiet homes.