A man responsible for growing almost 600 cannabis plants on 3 floors of a rental property in Tucheng District, New Taipei City, turned himself in today, after realizing he couldn’t remain on the run.
Chinese language media referred to the operation as a “marijuana botanical garden.”
Police busted the operation August 3, after the landlord checked the property and found the locks had been changed, and a strong grass-like odor emanated from what purportedly was a frozen seafood distribution business. Rent had not been paid for several months, and the landlord had not been able to make contact with the tenant.
Inside the building, investigators found an indoor cannabis growing operation covering three floors with close to 600 plants, many of which were almost ready to harvest.
The tenant, Mr Ou, turned himself at a Tucheng District police station in the early hours of this morning, August 7. Ou told police he had accumulated a large gambling debt and had been growing the cannabis on behalf of his creditor.
However, when his creditor died suddenly of illness in May, Ou lost his source of cash flow and was unable to pay the NT$95, 000 per month rent on the property. Reluctant to abandon or destroy the crop so close to harvest, he maintained a low profile and avoided the landlord.
Neighbors say that Ou was mysterious and would only appear at odd hours for a short time, and they hardly ever saw any loading and unloading at the wholesale frozen seafood distribution business. Windows had been papered over.
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