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Sheriff: Marijuana cultivation, processing operations found at Nevada County site

A Nevada County man has been arrested, accused of growing and selling marijuana, and operating a honey oil lab on property near Grass Valley that is owned by a Colorado resident.

The Nevada County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Task Force and Major Crime Unit executed a search warrant Wednesday in the 20000 block of Big Spring Drive, in a rural area southwest of Grass Valley. The warrant was based on information relating to marijuana cultivation, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release.

No one was at the residence when authorities arrived. But detectives found a sophisticated honey oil lab, several thousand dollars in U.S. currency, an outdoor marijuana garden consisting of 36 plants, 30 to 40 pounds of processed marijuana, four marijuana recommendations from individuals who live outside Nevada County or who recently moved there, and evidence of online interstate marijuana sales, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release. Detectives also found packaged product addressed to other states.

A short time later, Kyle Perry, 35, an unemployed welder who lives at the Big Spring Drive address, was found away from the residence and arrested. Sheriff’s officials said Perry made a few brief statements before his arrest, admitting to the interstate sales and stating that he collects marijuana for his business from other growers in Nevada County in addition to what is grown on the Big Spring Drive property.

Further evidence found at the scene indicated Perry has several business relationships pertaining to his online sales in the San Diego area, according to the news release.

Sheriff’s officials said the Nevada County Narcotics Task Force has seen a significant increase in honey oil labs associated with medical marijuana grows. Many of of the county’s backyard marijuana growers, they said, are selling leftover marijuana plant material by converting it to honey oil. Officials say growers are selling the “cola” or “bud,” then taking the rest of the plant material and extracting the THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, and turning it into honey oil, which has a high percentage of THC. The going rate for honey oil currently is $60 per gram, sheriff’s officials said.

Perry was arrested and booked into the county’s Wayne Brown Correctional Facility on suspicion of marijuana cultivation, sales and operating a honey oil lab, all felony offenses.

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