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Elk Grove Realitor Linked To 21 Grow Houses

Jim Finnel

Fallen Cannabis Warrior & Ex News Moderator
An Elk Grove real estate agent has ties to nearly half of 21 raided pot houses, according to a database of properties sold in the area.

Authorities arrested Vivian Hoang, 34, Wednesday in coordinated raids in Sacramento, Elk Grove and Galt. She owned two of the houses and sold another eight while working at Elite Realty of Elk Grove, according to Metrolist Services.

Hoang was one of 15 people arrested in the raids, which followed a 10-month investigation. Police seized 6,855 marijuana plants, 36 pounds of processed marijuana, more than $200,000 in cash and 10 vehicles.

Elk Grove Police spokesman Christopher Trim said all 21 homes were connected, but he declined to reveal details.

"We're fairly confident the homes that we've uncovered are the end (of this network)," Trim told The Sacramento Bee.

Hoang left Elite Realty more than a month ago, said former co-worker Gus Chaveste who described Hoang as "very nice, humble lady."

"It was a big shocker to us," Chaveste said.

It wasn't immediately clear if Hoang had a lawyer. Messages left with the Elk Grove police and the district attorney's office weren't immediately returned.

Marijuana growers have been buying suburban homes—many in newer developments—because of the anonymity the drug dealers believe the neighborhoods afford. But unlike indoor pot growers arrested last year, the people involved in this week's raid took extra steps to hide the marijuana from neighbors.

They furnished the downstairs of the homes, only grew the marijuana plants on the second floor and lived part time in the houses, Trim said. The houses found last year often had unkempt yards and covered windows that drew neighbors' attention.

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Source: San Jose Mercury News
Contact: San Jose Mercury News
Copyright: 2007 San Jose Mercury News
Website: http://www.mercurynews.com/news/ci_6961911
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