On Tuesday, January 7, 2014, at approximately 9:00 a.m., detectives from the Morongo Basin Sheriff’s Station and the Sheriff’s Narcotics Division Marijuana Enforcement Team served a search warrant at a residence in the 2700 block of Shawnee Trail in the unincorporated area of Landers. Suspects Othman Quran and Jason Noonan were present at the residence when detectives arrived. During the search of the property, detectives discovered a large Quonset hut style garage and three adjacent steel shipping containers had been turned into a large marijuana cultivation operation. The rooms had been sealed with commercial grade spray foam, had electrical wiring, plumbing and an advanced hydroponics set-up with grow lights, air-conditioning and exhaust system.
The investigation at the residence on Shawnee Trail led detectives to a larger marijuana cultivation operation at two separate residences, across the street from each other, in the 9300 block of Craver Road in Morongo Valley. Suspects Derek Roger, Brian Thalasinos, Siaosi Feao and Mark Digiulio were present at the residence when detectives arrived. During the search of the properties, detectives discovered a large Quonset hut style garage on one of the properties and several rooms inside both residences turned into a large marijuana cultivation operation. The rooms had been sealed with commercial grade spray foam, had electrical wiring, plumbing and an advanced hydroponics set-up with grow lights, air-conditioning and exhaust system.
Detectives found all the components for a chemical extraction lab to produce concentrated cannabis at the residences on Shawnee Trail and Craver Road. The chemical process, which utilizes butane to extract THC from marijuana, is illegal and a violation of California’s Health & Safety Code. The extraction process is extremely dangerous with a high potential for explosion due to the use of large amounts of butane. The concentrated cannabis is known as Butane Honey Oil (BHO), Dabs, Wax and Ear Wax, and is rapidly gaining popularity among young marijuana users who are unaware of the associated dangers of ingesting a substance containing butane. Detectives seized 2,550 marijuana plants, cultivation equipment and extraction lab components from the different locations.
Quran, Noonan, Roger, Thalasinos, Feao and Digiulio were arrested and booked at the Morongo Basin Jail for Cultivation and Sales of Marijuana, Manufacturing of a Controlled Substance and Conspiracy.
Anyone with information regarding this investigation is urged to contact the Sheriff’s Narcotics Division at (909) 890-4840. Persons wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call the We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or leave information on the We-Tip Hotline at WWW.wetip.com.
Station: Morongo Basin Sheriff's Station / Sheriff's Narcotics Division
Phone No. (760) 366-4175 / (909) 890-4840