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Tuesday, Jun 19, 2018
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Highlands deputies arrest man for suspected grow houses

— After deputies found 37 marijuana plants and $8,000, the wife of a man arrested said that as far as she knew her husband earned a living by cutting lawns, according to an arrest report released Wednesday.

Whether he was cutting lawns, Humberto Camejo, 49, 170 Marks Road, Venus, was arrested by the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office and charged with unauthorized connection to utility equipment, producing marijuana, possession of marijuana with intent to sell or deliver, trafficking marijuana and possession of drug equipment.

Authorities were tipped off as far as those two properties and two others on Wednesday by Glades Electrical Cooperative, which discovered that electricity was being illegally diverted, Highlands County Sheriff Susan Benton said.

Investigators found 13 marijuana plants Wednesday at one property and were waiting to obtain a search warrant for another property, Benton said.

She said all of the properties were in the Venus area. It’s not unusual for marijuana growers to steal electricity to provide the light indoors to grow the plant, she said.

As a result, Glades Electric Cooperative, which stands to lose millions of dollars, notifies the Sheriff’s Office, she said.

On Tuesday, deputies found marijuana at 170 Marks Road and 190 Marks Road, both properties owned by Camejo, the report said.

At 190 Marks Road, deputies found two electrical distribution panels, 16 electrical power transformers, assorted power cords, light fixtures, 24 light bulbs and 24 marijuana plants, the report said.

On 170 Marks Road, they found more than $8,000 in cash, 13 marijuana plants, an electrical distribution panel and two electric transformers.

After the searches, the wife of Camejo told deputies she was unaware of the plants being on the property and had never been to the areas where the searches were conducted, the report said.

“She implied she has not worked in approximately two months and explained that her husband mows lawns to make an income,” the report said.

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