Marijuana with an estimated value of $2 million was seized Thursday in multi-agency raids of several houses in the Cascade neighborhood of Renton.
Two men, ages 46 and 32, were arrested in Skyway in connection with running the operation and several others were detained as part of the investigation, according to Renton Police Commander David Leibman.
Investigators discovered more than 3,000 marijuana plants, more than 150 pounds of processed marijuana, sophisticated growing and processing equipment, approximately $440,000 in cash and a handgun.
Eight vehicles also were seized, including two luxury SUVs.
After receiving an anonymous tip, the Renton Police Department conducted a two-month investigation into the organized criminal marijuana-growing operation.
“They conducted a ton or surveillance, saw the short-stay traffic themselves, the covered windows and doors, and could detect the odor of marijuana and the sounds of equipment running inside the homes,” Leibman said.
Professional growers illegally tap into the power feed before the meter, he said.
More than 60 officers from multiple local and federal law enforcement agencies took part in serving the early morning search warrants, according to Leibman. SWAT and investigative teams searched six houses in Renton and two in Skyway.
It’s unknown whether the operation was serving a local or regional market or something larger, “but it was big,” Leibman said.