Sunday, March 09, 2008

Cheating on every level, ripping off CARE

Brooktrails pot bust, two arrested

A sophisticated indoor marijuana grow on Oriole Drive in Brooktrails was searched on February 26 by Mendocino County Sheriff's officers, leading to the arrest of two residents. Nearly 20 pounds of processed bud, 152 mature pot plants, firearms and packaging materials were found during the search, say police. A 3-year old child at the was placed in the custody of Child Protective Services.

Danielle Lanzit, 26, and Nicholas Grilli, 27, were arrested on suspicion of cultivation and possession of marijuana for sale.

Based on an electricity bill found at the scene, the residents were apparently being helped with their $1,500 per month electricity bill by the CARE low-income subsidy, say deputies. For a three-person household to qualify for a CARE subsidy, gross income is limited to a maximum of $34,400 per year.

Lanzit and Grilli qualified in 2007 for a $350,000 mortgage with estimated payments of $30,000 per year and real estate taxes of $1,900 according to public records. These payments, along with the electricity costs, suggest a somewhat higher annual income than is allowed under the CARE program.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company does request verification of income for CARE subscribers, says spokeswoman Jana Morris. This verification typically involves an income tax return or record of wages and salaries. CARE procedures are established by the California Public Utilities Commission and PG&E is unable to question CARE subscribers even when electricity use nearly equals their total income allowed under the program.

At the wholesale rate of $2,500 per pound, the pot in the Oriole Drive home is valued at about $430,000.
h/t: RS

Now you tell me these people are going to willingly pay taxes if you legalize pot. They're not an exception, this is more common than not. They lie to get 215 cards, if they have them, they live outside the law on every level, they cheat the system every step of the way. You think they are going to pay to get legal in terms of proper business operations? Safe working conditions? Code compliance? I just don't think so. And people who really DO make $34,000 a year loudly support and defend these people. People who care so little about their kids that they risk sending them into the system to be raised by strangers. Why?


  1. 20 pounds at $2500 a pound equals $50,000.......where in the world did they come up with $430,000? even with another 20 pounds harvested off of the 152 plants found growing, that would make $100,000. GROSS income...

    $1500 a month to PGE, times 12 months a year equals $18,000, straight off the top.....clones cost $10 each, another $5000 off the top...trimmers cost $200 a pound, thats $8000 off the and soil costs another $5,000 a year......pot brokers get another $200 a pound, thats $8,000.....shall we get into depreciation on the property used to cultivate or on the equipment?

    no business operates without overhead.....i hate to be a buzzkill here, but its true...

  2. rose,
    you ask, "why"? here is why: its called supply and demand. its simple, really.....hundreds of pot clubs exist in california right now as i type this. pot clubs charge about $450 an ounce for their prime product. the prime product has to come form somewhere. would you rather it be china than here? i would prefer the money to flow here, not to mexico or china.....and it is happening, mom and pop growers are losing their market. pot that sold for $5000 a pound just 10 years ago is now going for half of that price. HUGE grows across the border, are quickly taking over the supply to the "medical pot" market in california......

    mom and pop growers in humboldt county should be hoping that the feds cut down on some of the bigger clubs in LA that are run by the mexican mafia.

  3. theotheryou

    If it's such a small grow then wouldn't Mr. Mom and Pop do thier own trimming ?

    And $2500 a pound is a very conservative estimate. Not to mention that growing indoors you can time that by FOUR. YOu need to re-calculate.

    How about this? If you really believe marijuana is medicine then this couple, with the $350,000.00 mortgage, could grow two or three plants in the closet to supply their medical needs! but hten they wouldhave to actually get real jobs and pay income tax, social security, medicare and so on.

    And this doesn't even address the health issues for the child. As in Mold or some local or out of town gangtsters doing a ome invasion robbery.

    And if the HUGH grows pop up across the boarder, they will be easier for the feds to deal with.

    215 is a joke, a shame. Way to go Medocino Deputies.

  4. 10:27,
    i dont think pot is medicine, you must have me confused with someone else. i see it as a cash crop only.

    now about recalculating my figures. the article clearly states that the pot IN THE HOUSEHOLD, AT THE TIME OF ARREST was valued at $430,000....unless the cops have a buyer set up already, that pot is now worth $0 dollars. something is only worth what someone else will pay for it...i could care less if YOU are able to harvest 4 times a year, the article was referring to the pot in the house only.

    as for the huge grows in mexico, one needs only look in the recent issues of High Times magazine. the mexicans have begun using northern california strains to supply the southern california pot clubs. the evidence is there in full color(mainly green!!)...

  5. 10:27,
    werent you around in the 80's and 90's? every mom and pop grower hires a few trimmers for a week or two a year. do you really think that two people could manicure 20-40 pounds themselves?

  6. I don't often agree with theo therme but here he/she is correct (and being conservative at that). A yield of 3 lbs per plant is very high. All of the welfare scams these people were engaged in are already illegal. If pot were legal and taxed and they didn't comply that would also be illegal. They are definitely crooks who were AIDED by prohibition until caught. Now the other criminal justice system costs to the taxpayers will kick in.

  7. The authorities' calculation of pot value has always been questionable, Tom. I can't dispute your calculations because I don't know what pot is worth nowdays or how many possible pounds there are on 152 plants. Nor do I have any idea how many clones or how much soil these people bought, how many trimmers they hired, if they use a broker, etc. so I really don't have any idea what their profit & expenses are & neither do you.
    Part of the point here, though, is that, minus the overhead, etc., the money left is PURE profit as in, not taxed.
    These people have a $350k mortage & nearly $2k in annual property taxes (which should probably be considered a business expense, too, since it's a home ag operation... you know, like vegetable farmers do) & a $1500 a month PG&E bill for which they receive low-income assistance through the C.A.R.E. program. Numbers like those reported don't indicate a low income. Wanna bet they have MediCal, too?
    Doesn't it bother you just a little bit knowing that you're the one picking up the slack for these folks on April 15, Tom? Or knowing that you're the one who pays for the very expensive babysitting services provided by CPS?

  8. robin,
    i was assuming that the 152 plants would yield 20 pounds, just like was found in the house. if the PGE bill was $1500, they were running approx. 15,000 watts....20 pounds would be consistent with that wattage. indoor growing yeilds are based on wattage, not number of plants.

    "These people have a $350k mortage & nearly $2k in annual property taxes (which should probably be considered a business expense, too, since it's a home ag operation... you know, like vegetable farmers do) & a $1500 a month PG&E bill. Numbers like those reported don't indicate a low income."

    robin, these are COSTS, not incomes. they dont OWN that mortage, they make payments on it. They dont GET money from property taxes, they PAY them. i am not footing the bil for these people in any way. they shop locally, they pay their mortgage, they pay their property taxes.

    i could care less if they get medi-cal. i personally, just like jesus, want kids to be taken care of medically.
    i already pay enough in health insurance to subsidize 10 people other than my family, so whats one more?

    im a libertarian at heart, talk of income tax on the federal level wont go very far with me. i prefer to let people keep the money that they EARN...and yes, growing pot, and selling it, is EARNING money....

  9. "Or knowing that you're the one who pays for the very expensive babysitting services provided by CPS?"
    we wouldnt need to be paying for babysitting if the cops hadnt taken the kid away from the parents. legalization is the only solution to your issue.

    do you really support incarcerating parents for growing plants that god put on this earth? for trying to make a home for themselves? everytime someone mentions the $350,000 mortgage that will now go into foreclosure, it makes me sad to see how some locals try to stiffle the local economy...

  10. I said those items are expenses, Tom, but one has to be worth a little something to qualify for a $350k mortage... even from a sub-prime lender.
    Welfare & other government-subsidized programs are funded by your tax dollars.
    MediCal is not just for children. Your private health insurance is your business but the premiums pay for you & your family's coverage only. No matter what the amount is you pay, it is not enough to subsidize 10 other people.
    I agree with you on legalization.
    I want the children's needs looked after, too, in more ways than just medically.
    I don't feel sorry for these people. Getting busted is a risk of the business & one they were obviously willing to take.
    There is no God.

  11. robin,
    i was kidding about the god stuff. i dont believe in the supernatural...

    i agree with you on everything, except the mortgage......i personally know people who have borrowed over a half a million dollars with NO money down and NO money in the bank. i would bet that the people in this story qualified for a no-doc loan. those loans require no documentation of income. the growers tell the bank that they make $100,000 a year, they tell the welfare dept that they make $25,000 a year and no one knows any different. until they get busted......

  12. So theo you see nothing wrong in what they did?

  13. anon,
    i see nothing wrong with growing plants. i see nothing wrong with trying to make money.

    the fact that they lied to get on the PGE program was wrong, i will concede that. although it sounds like PGE got into a contract that doesnt make much sense. did you see the part where PGE cant question a $1500 electric bill when the customer is claiming to be be poor? thats wrong..

    if anyone did anything wrong in this case, its the cops who seperated a family over some vegetation. the stress caused by Big Brother's presence and the cost that these peopl will incur due to this arrest is by far the worst thing to come out of the story....but im just a silly libertarian...

  14. No-doc loans still require a credit report & property appraisal, Tom.

  15. Theo therme. You are such an AH! Blame it on the cops. I hope the cops catch up to you, but with your attitude they probably have sometime in your life.

    How healthy is it for a child to live in a residence with growing marijuana? Do they talk about that in High Times?

  16. it's good to know that Rose has everything figured out.

    I always figured that paying taxes was the best way to protect a crop - just get the government in on the business. It's just like buying protection...

  17. Did you know, 2:27, that many states have a tax stamp for marijuana? Growers/suppliers are required by law to buy the stamps & place them on their products. There are tax stamps for other illegal drugs, too. California is not one of those states.

  18. 2:23,
    why is it unhealthy for children to grow up around agriculture? my great-grandparents grew hemp and they turned out OK.

  19. heres a question for it better to have a kid in the foster system, at tax payers expense, or is it better to have the kid at home with parents who happen to be farmers?

    when did humboldt ocunty become anti-agriculture?

  20. Back to your calculations, Tom...
    the cops are figuring a yield of 1-pound per plant. Is that conservative?

  21. It probably isn't unhealthy for children to grow up around agriculture, Tom. In fact, some people would maintain that it's the healthiest lifestyle there is. All that fresh air, sunshine, hard work & good food! There are plenty of elderly people who were raised on farms.
    However, 152 crop plants growing in the house is unhealthy for everybody living there whether it's marijuana or sunflowers or corn & you know it.

  22. And, yes, I know the article doesn't say the plants were growing in the living quarters. They probably weren't... it's not Arcata, after all! Hee, hee.

  23. Theo - while I can appreciate the nuances of the in-an-ideal-world-this-would-be-like-Copenhagen-and-we-would-all-be-so-enlightened-if-it-was-legal discussion and argument - this is where the argument falls flat on its face.

    You cannot blame anyone but the parents for the consequences of the risk they took so cavalierly. They have one responsibility and one only and that is to that three year old, whose world has just been ripped away from her because of their not being honest, lawful, moral, or responsible. The three year old is an innocent who does not deserve what just happened.

    They did that. Period. They are guilty. Guilty as sin.

    Regardless of they if it was this way or that way it would be cool, the fact remains it is illegal, they knew the consequences and they gambled with her life, trust and security and lost.

    What they have done is irreparable, even if they get her(him?) back, that is a soul that will not feel secure ever again.

    And for what? C'mon, if it was corporate greed you guys'd be all over it. It is the same thing with a different, young, pretty, hig, fun face, just as fucking evil.

    Although I will grant this - you can blame the culture that has been fostered in Humboldt and Mendocino that tells these people growing up that they can grow and live the high life and nothing of consequence will happen to them.

    I have NO SYMPATHY.

  24. rose,
    you hit the nail on the head. RISK is the issue here. the higher the price of pot, the more people will be willing to break the law......

    busting growers, even small ones like these, only increases demand and decreases supply of pot. that raises the price higher, which brings in more growers, and they cycle goes on.

    socialist endeavors like the "war on drugs" or the "war on terror" will never work....but im a free trader, i dont beleive in using the government in order to manipulate the marketplace.

  25. rose,
    beleive it or not, the grower's buyer needs some pot. another grower will fill that order. the buyer will get some pot, there are thousands of pounds of pot for sale right now.....

    its all about supply and demand.....but i would never expect fake conservatives to be able to talk economics. 8 years of bush has turned the conservative movement upside down. i cant beleive i voted for that socialist....

    and rose, i never talk bad about corporate greed. there is no such thing to me. its a dog eat dog world, and a capitalistic country.


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