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. St. Pete's Downtown Looper expands service with $900,000 grant

    Transportation

    By DIVYA KUMAR

    Times Staff Writer

    ST. PETERSBURG ­— The Downtown Looper will expand its route and its hours starting in October 2018 thanks to a $900,000 grant from the Florida Department of Transportation.

  2. Latest sewage crisis fallout: Higher utility bills in St. Pete

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — For months the cost of the city's sewage crisis has been measured in terms of environmental damage, legal ramifications and political repercussions.

    Now residents are about to get the bill.

    Signs at North Shore Park in St. Petersburg warn people in September 2016 to stay out of the water due to contamination from partially treated sewage during the height of the city's sewage crisis. Now the City Council is considering how much to raise utility rates to pay the $326 million bill to fix St. Petersburg's sewage system. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]
  3. Rays add a bat, too, acquiring Lucas Duda from Mets

    Blogs

    The Rays made another big move today, acquiring 1B/DH Lucas Duda from the Mets.

    Duda, 31, is a lefty slugger who will take over as the Rays primary DH against right-handers, with Corey Dickerson now playing most of the time in the outfield.

    To get Duda, the Rays gave up minor-league RHP Drew Smith, …

    The Rays acquired 1B/DH Lucas Duda from the Mets.
  4. Florida's legal losses up to $19 million and counting since 2011

    Blogs

    From Gary Fineout of the Associated Press:

    This is getting expensive.
  5. Susanne Bartsch installation at Tampa Museum of Art

    News

    Susanne Bartsch and Raquel Martuscelli adjust the hat and hair on a mannequin in the Susanne Bartsch: Art-a-Porter exhibit on Thursday July 27, 2017 at the Tampa Museum of Art, in Tampa, Fla. The exhibit features designs worn by Bartsch and highlights her career in fashion. Bartsch is known for her over the top style and lavish parties thrown in the New York club scene, since the 1980s. The exhibit runs July 30 through November 12.