Parents of 2 arrested after marijuana lab discovered under cover - WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

Parents of 2 arrested after marijuana lab discovered under covered pool

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SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (WSVN) -- The parents of a teenager and a young girl have been arrested and charged after a marijuana lab was found under a covered, drained swimming pool.

The discovery was made late Monday night, at around 11:55, at a home located 21964 S.W. 125th Place. "This is one of the more challenging grow houses we have seen," said Miami-Dade Police Detective Roy Rutland. "This is challenging because you're not going to smell it; more than likely you're certainly not going to see it."

After police received a tip, they obtained a warrant and arrested Luis Ramirez-Gonzalez and Yamile Gongar. They appeared before a judge Tuesday afternoon. Gongar received a $25,000 bond and Ramirez-Gonzalez $25,500. They both face numerous charges, including trafficking marijuana

Parents of 2 arrested after marijuana lab discovered under covered pool

A neighbor whose backyard is right next to the family's yard said they never suspected a thing from their neighbors aside from smelling pot every now and again. "We never expected anything like that because they were always having parties and stuff," said neighbor Yeny Devarona. "They sounded normal, having fun. We were actually jealous of them."

Police seized 70 pounds and about $250,000 worth of marijuana plants.

Next door neighbor Alex Sanza was completely taken by surprise. "We had no idea. We had no idea what was going on, absolutely no idea what was going on," said Sanza.

Sanza was moving out of his rental when police stormed the home. "It's a total shock. I mean we've been here for a year and it's been quiet. I mean nothing, nothing, nothing, no smell, no nothing. It was just totally quiet," he said.

"There was a shed in the back that had an opening on the bottom that led to the construction of what appeared to be a pool," said Miami-Dade Police Lt. Jose Gonzalez. "Inside that pool we found over 20 plants of marijuana that were being hydroponically grown."

Police said a tip led them to the home. Investigators said the husband and wife lived there with their two daughters, ages 8 and 17.

"Underground grow houses are not very common," said Gonzalez. "However, in the last month this is the second underground hydroponics lab that we found. Same construction, same type of set up, so we believe it's the same person, or it's a trend."

The couple's lawyer Erick Cruz said, "Just because a person owns a house where there is marijuana growing, it does not mean that person is in possession of the marijuana."

The parents are expected to bond out of jail sometime Tuesday. A friend has stepped forward to post that bond. The children are staying with relatives, police said.


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