DETROIT (WXYZ) - Authorities say drug dealers took an old abandoned warehouse and turned it into an elaborate drug operation. Over 800 plants were found growing in several rooms on three different floors of the Detroit building.
"The investigators who have gone in there are very seasoned and they haven't seen this in Wayne County's history in quite some time," said Paula Bridges, Wayne County Sheriff's Department.
Authorities acted on a tip and monitored the building on Loraine for several weeks. Saturday's raid netted over $750,000 in marijuana, a handgun, and three dogs used to protect the product. Four men were arrested and other people are being interviewed as well.
"They spent an awful lot of money to make sure this particular product grows quite rapidly so they can in turn process it and put it out onto the street," said Bridges.
Harvested plants were even kept around so as not to arouse suspicion. DTE was also interested in the building because according to records, the huge warehouse was only using $15-$35 of electricity a month. Rooms were outfitted with thousands of dollars in robotic lights and fans. The bill should have been a lot higher.
"It should be hundreds of dollars, and in this case, tens of thousands. But in this instance because they were stealing it was like 10 or 15 dollars so it's outrageous," said Michael Lynch, Director of Security for DTE.
The stolen electricity was rigged from a transformer outside and then monitored with timers. It's believed the drug operation had been up and running since last November or December. New air conditioning units and other equipment indicate plans to expand the already massive operation. The names of the four arrested men have not been released yet.