HALL COUNTY, Ga. - Millions of dollars worth of marijuana and hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash were seized from six grow houses operating in plain sight.
Authorities told Channel 2’s Tom Regan a total of $7 million in high grade pot was discovered in the basements of suburban homes in Hall, Barrow and Jackson counties.
One house was in a nice, suburban neighborhood in Gainesville.
Investigators seized 1,500 plants, and 300 pounds of packaged pot. They also took in over $300,000 in cash.
Nine people were arrested.
Neighbors told Regan they were completely fooled.
“They seemed just like a normal family,” Yanis Latsis said. “That is shocking to me. I never would have guessed in my right mind that something was going on over there."
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Expensive and elaborate growing systems are needed to make the high grade pot, and one of the better ways to keep it all a secret is to plant your roots in suburban subdivisions where neighbors keep to themselves.
"This marijuana based on its grade, would have been a value of $4,500 a pound," said Scott Ware.
That strategy worked with neighbors like Sandra Booth.
"I never would have guessed that was going on in our subdivision," said Booth.
As part of their investigation, authorities also froze more than $230 cash inbank accounts they say was associated with the growing operation.
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