Valley News -

By Jeff Pack

Five arrested in Temecula wine country marijuana grow raid


Last updated 8/16/2019 at 4:26pm

Riverside County Sheriff's Department

Emidio Aparicio, Nayeli Aparicio, Miguel Belmont, Juan Ramirez, and Steven Whitaker were arrested for their involvement in an illegal marijuana grow in Temecula Wine Country on Friday, Aug. 16.

TEMECULA - The Riverside County Sheriff's Department's Southwest Sheriff's Station and Cannabis Regulation Task Force served a search warrant on Friday, Aug. 16 that resulted in the arrest of five people believed to involved in an illegal marijuana grow operation.

Deputies were working on an anonymous tip that indicated there was what appeared to be a large scale illegal marijuana grow on the 37300 block of Green Meadows Road, in the unincorporated area of Temecula. After further investigation, a search warrant was obtained for the rural four-acre residential property.

When deputies arrived on the scene, several workers attempted to run and hide, but more than a dozen people were captured, detained and questioned, according to Sergeant Jon Wade.

"More than 2,800 marijuana plants were located in various stages of growth," said Sgt. Wade. "All of the illegal plants were seized pursuant to the search warrant."

The five people arrested and booked into Cois Byrd Detention Center were: Emidio Aparicio, 30, of Hemet; Nayeli Aparicio, 27, of Hemet; Miguel Belmont, 31, of Hemet; Juan Ramirez, 42, of Temecula; and Steven Whitaker, 62, of Temecula.

Sgt. Wade said the investigation is on-going and anyone with any information is encouraged to contact the Southwest Station Special Enforcement Team at (951) 696-3000.


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