Milwaukee law officials uncover second illegal THC-vape operation in Wisconsin
In a second surprise arrest, a man and a woman are being accused of allegedly operating another contraband THC-vape operation in Wisconsin – Ground Zero for the outbreak of mysterious lung injuries plaguing the nation. Last Tuesday, the Milwaukee Sheriff’s Office responded to an anonymous tip that led to the search of a small home in the West Norwich Court area of the city. Investigators discovered nearly $1 million in cash, more than 10,000 vapor cartridges filled with illegally obtained THC oils, and at least 18 pounds of marijuana.
The cash was apparently being stored in a bedroom closet hidden inside two 20-gallon storage totes. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports one tote contained “$450,500 and the other with $452,680.“ Another $30,000 was found inside a dresser drawer.
Also discovered in the home was a loaded Smith & Wesson with magazine attachment and extra cartridges and a semiautomatic handgun with flashlight attachments and a laser. More items confiscated during the search include 13,509 various vape cartridges and packages of edible gummies laced with THC. Another 1,660 cartridges labeled as “Dank’ vapes were also found in the home.
Other brand names being used by the alleged drug ring include Blue Cookies, Cookies, Connected Brass Knuckles, KRT, King Pen, P Butter, Golden Ticket, Power Wreck, State Flower, Gorilla Glue #4, and Live Well. An “Hawaiian Punch” flavored THC-vapor device was also discovered inside the BMW of one of the alleged conspirators. On October 7, Amanda Ware, 30, and Govanny "Gio" Molina, 34, were charged with drug trafficking and possession with intent to distribute contraband THC substances. Bail was set for 25,0000 each.
First arrests occurred in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on September 2019
This is not the first arrest of suspects accused of running an illegal THC operation out of Wisconsin. Last month, The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department arrested three members of the HuffhInes family, brothers Jacob, 23, and Tyler, 20, along with their 43-year old mother Courtney for running a similar operation.
According to The Kenosha News, law officials accused the Huffhines of making and selling between 30,000 and 50,000 illegal THC cartridges per day at an average cost of $22. At the time of the initial arrest, more than 188 pounds of marijuana were confiscated with an estimated street value of $1.5 million.
Law enforcement officials from both Wisconsin Sherriff’s Departments are said to be coordinating their investigation with federal agencies like the FDA which are currently investigating the origins of the “vaping-related” THC scandal of recent weeks. Meanwhile, at least six states have initiated statewide flavor bans on nicotine-based vaping products rather than focusing on the real public health threat: Black Market THC-based cartridges.
(Image courtesy of Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office/Journal Sentinel Online)