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Report of robbery leads deputies to Riverview grow house

RIVERVIEW — While responding to the report of a burglary in progress Sunday, Hillsborough County deputies stumbled into a marijuana grow house.

Deputies arrived to the 11125 Church Drive home at about 1:30 a.m. after someone called 911. The front door had been kicked open, but no one was inside.

What was inside, however, was a room devoted to growing marijuana — with more than 100 plants and about $35,000 worth of equipment, deputies said. They also seized a .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun.

Authorities from Tampa Electric responded and found the meter hooked up with a bypass, used to steal more than $20,000 in electricity, deputies said.

The homeowner, Elier Rogelio Perez, 35, was arrested later at a traffic stop. Perez was charged with armed trafficking of marijuana, cultivating and manufacturing marijuana, possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia and grand theft of electricity.

Report of robbery leads deputies to Riverview grow house 05/02/11 [Last modified: Monday, May 2, 2011 4:40pm]
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