Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Sheriff Gee announces major drug bust in West Hillsborough

Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren, from left, Maj. Frank Losat and Sheriff David Gee discuss the investigation.

MONICA HERNDON | Times

Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren, from left, Maj. Frank Losat and Sheriff David Gee discuss the investigation.

TAMPA — Two major investigations into illegal drug trafficking in Hillsborough County produced 51 arrests and the seizure of more than $1 million worth of marijuana and synthetic marijuana, the Sheriff's Office announced Friday.

Tips to Crime Stoppers played a major role in identifying marijuana grow houses throughout the Town 'N Country area, Riverview and parts of Pasco County, said Hillsborough Sheriff David Gee.

"What is more important than statistics are the crimes that are related to these grow houses," Gee said. "They're in neighborhoods where people are raising families."

Deputies discovered six grow houses while executing 10 search warrants in Hillsborough County under "Operation Fall Harvest." In all, 481 marijuana plants and 24.5 pounds of processed marijuana were seized, along with 10 firearms. The marijuana is worth about $1.4 million in street value, the Sheriff's Office said.

Five businesses were also investigated for selling synthetic marijuana, or "spice.''

At businesses near the University of South Florida, officers seized 150 pounds of spice — about 7,200 packages — worth about $352,000. The investigation also yielded 222 pounds of Damiana leaves used to make spice and $10,500 in U.S. currency, the Sheriff's Office said.

Sheriff Gee announces major drug bust in West Hillsborough 05/19/17 [Last modified: Friday, May 19, 2017 9:19pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Putin visits France, hopes to mend strained ties with West

    World

    VERSAILLES, France — On a visit likely to shape Russia-France ties for years, French President Emmanuel Macron hosted Russian President Vladimir Putin at the sumptuous Palace of Versailles on Monday for what the newly-elected French leader said would be "demanding" talks on Syria, the Ukrainian crisis and other …

    Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, is welcomed by French President Emmanuel Macron at the Palace of Versailles, near Paris, France, Monday. Monday's meeting comes in the wake of the Group of Seven's summit over the weekend where relations with Russia were part of the agenda, making Macron the first Western leader to speak to Putin after the talks. [AP photo]
  2. Five cool things to do when it's hot outside

    Outdoors

    Summer is not officially here, but it may as well be. School is out, vacations are coming, and it's time to enjoy the outdoors. Don't buy the argument that summer in Florida is too hot to get outside. There is plenty to do, and we'll prove it. Here are five cool things to do outdoors during another hot summer.

    Rainbow Springs State Park is a registered natural landmark. Rainbow Springs State Park in Dunnellon is one several state parks with natural swimming holes in Florida. (Octavio Jones | Times)
  3. Clearwater man dies after diving from boat into shallow waters

    Public Safety

    A 49-year-old man died after he jumped off a pontoon boat into shallow waters Sunday in the Gulf of Mexico.

  4. Restaurant review: Features Gastropub in Riverview is fine as movie theater fare, but unimpressive otherwise

    Food & Dining

    Movies aren't exactly dying. Despite all the sturm und drang of predictions that Netflix and streaming videos would kill the cinema, global box office receipts hit $38.6 billion in 2016, a 1 percent gain over the previous year. But that doesn't mean going to the cinema is precisely what it was a generation …

    The Features Gastropub is located inside the Riverview 14 GDX theater in Gibsonton, Fla. on Thursday, May 25, 2017.   The 5,900-square-foot Features Gastropub open in the . This element of the project is the brainchild of Philadelphia chef Brian Duffy, who appears frequently on NBC's The Today Show and the Spike TV show Bar Rescue
  5. JFK's last birthday: Gifts, champagne and wandering hands on the presidential yacht

    Nation

    It has been 100 years since John F. Kennedy's birth on May 29, 1917, at his parents' home in Brookline, Mass., just outside Boston. Over the course of his life, Kennedy enjoyed lavish birthday celebrations, the most famous being a Democratic fundraising bash at Madison Square Garden on May 19, 1962, when a sequined …

    President John F. Kennedy aboard the Sequoia in 1963 opening birthday presents. [Robert Knudsen | John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum]