NORTH PORT — The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office has arrested Jose Luis Fernandez, 40, of the 2700 block of Lucaya Ave. in North Port, in connection with a marijuana grow house operation at another home he rented about a mile away.
According to an SCSO report, after conducting surveillance on Fernandez, detectives executed a search warrant Tuesday at 2703 Thomas Lane, a home Fernandez rented. There, they discovered two bedrooms and the garage in the house had been converted to grow marijuana, equipped with grow lights, fans and air-conditioning. Authorities located 60 newly cultivated pot plants in the garage and 5 pounds of recently harvested buds in boxes in one of the bathrooms, the report shows. The plants in the garage weighed 527.7 grams, or 18.47 ounces. Fernandez has a long criminal history, with more than 60 arrests for a variety of drug crimes in Sarasota County and elsewhere, the report shows. He was charged with cultivation of marijuana and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, and remains at the Sarasota County Jail without bond. The investigation is continuing.
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