GOLDEN GATE ESTATES, Fla.- Detectives arrested a 48-year-old Miami man Thursday and charged him with operating a marijuana grow house in Golden Gate Estates.
Jose E. Morales faces a charge of possession of a structure for the purpose of trafficking marijuana, a felony.
On March 8, detectives from the Collier County Sheriff’s Office Vice and Narcotics Bureau executed a search warrant at a residence at 3745 Randall Blvd. in Golden Gate Estates.
Detectives discovered an indoor marijuana grow operation inside the garage. The garage contained 36 mature marijuana plants that were ready to be harvested. Two more marijuana plants were discovered in a separate room next to the garage.
The marijuana had an estimated street value of $114,000.
Two additional air conditioner units and 13 1,000-watt power transformers were discovered in a room next to the garage. The power transformers were being used to power the 1,000-watt high-pressure sodium light bulbs that provided artificial light to the marijuana plants. Detectives determined that the electricity to the residence was being diverted from the main supply line to supply power to the grow operation.
Detectives also discovered several thousand dollars of high-grade fertilizer that was being used to fertilize the marijuana plants.
The marijuana grow equipment was valued at approximately $20,000.
No one was home when the search warrant was executed.
Further investigation revealed Morales owns the residence.
Detectives located Morales at the residence Thursday and arrested him.