Man Owns Both Pot Buildings, Police Say

Man Owns Both Pot Buildings, Police Say
Posted by CN Staff on January 15, 2004 at 08:12:04 PT
By Betsy Powell and Roberta Avery, Toronto Star
Source: Toronto Star 
Barrie -- Two buildings where massive indoor marijuana grow operations were discovered during raids last weekend are owned by real estate magnate Vince De Rosa, police confirmed yesterday."He owns both spots and there's marijuana growing at both spots. We'll definitely be looking into that coincidence," Staff Sergeant Rick Barnum of the Ontario Provincial Police said yesterday.
De Rosa's Fercan Developments, a Toronto-based real estate management company, owns the landmark former Molson brewery where police seized 30,000 plants from a vast hydroponic growing operation thought to be the largest uncovered in North America. Police executed a second search warrant Saturday at another well-known location for cottage commuters, a one-time shopping mall complex once anchored by Fuda's supermarket, where they seized 3,000 more hydroponic pot plants.The building, at 2921 Highway 11, in Oro-Medonte Township, is owned by 1071118 Ontario Ltd., land registry records indicate.Corporate company records show that 1071118 Ontario Ltd. is another of De Rosa's companies."We'll definitely be looking to speak to Mr. De Rosa and find out why it would happen; that's pretty logical," Barnum said.There are about a half-dozen businesses in Oro Centre complex, including a Canada Post office and a bailiff's office.Fercan Developments owns a number of properties across southern Ontario, including Hamilton's City Centre. De Rosa has not returned calls from the Star.But Fercan executive Italo Ferrari has repeatedly denied knowing anything about the marijuana operation and has said they're landlords to many properties."We don't know who comes and who goes," he said.The high-tech marijuana factory inside the brewery escaped attention for more than a year, police said, despite being next to Highway 400.According to Barrie's chief building official, Gord Allison, no building permit applications were made by Fercan after purchasing the building for $8 million in 2001, even though it housed a number of businesses along with the marijuana grow operation."The way that Molson's had it set up, the building was already divided into areas big enough to accommodate different businesses," said Allison.With no building permit application, "there was no reason for us to conduct inspections," he said. The Barrie fire department inspected the building after Fercan purchased it and found it in good order, said assistant fire chief Cynthia Ross Tustin."There was no reason for us to go back in there. It's not like a nursing home, for example, where we make regular inspections. This was a steel and concrete building with a sprinkler system."Police video footage showed a high-wired tropical jungle of marijuana plants, grown through computer-controlled environments that included the use of giant beer vats as hothouses for germinating seeds.Yesterday, between 40 and 50 officers continued their investigation inside the Molson plant. "We're going to be in there for a while," Barnum said.At the Barrie courthouse yesterday, federal crown attorney Karen Jokinen was granted a retroactive publication ban on Tuesday's hearing for the eight men charged in connection with the raid on the former brewery and released on bail. The search warrants were also sealed.Note: Brewery, former shopping mall had been rented out. - OPP will be `looking into that coincidence'With files from Gail SwainsonSource: Toronto Star (CN ON)Author: Betsy Powell and Roberta Avery, Toronto StarPublished: January 15, 2004Copyright: 2004 The Toronto Star Contact: lettertoed Website: Related Articles:Huge Marijuana Factory Was One Strange Joint Bust Worth $30-million, Police Say High on Big Brewery Bust 
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Comment #3 posted by Virgil on January 15, 2004 at 11:14:25 PT
Where are the tee shirts?
My creed is to seed the need to free the weed, dweeb.I like it. Sounds like a good signature line. I must now visit Hempcity and change my signature.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on January 15, 2004 at 10:32:19 PT
Virgil 20 Years!
That's way too long from now! Made me tired just thinking about it.
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Comment #1 posted by Virgil on January 15, 2004 at 10:26:44 PT
Prohibition fatigue, demonization fatigue
The Internet has broken the dome of silence. The fatique of it all. Even I am tired of calling bullshit and picking out an occasional lie, if they want to fatigue on with prohibition, there is not much else to do but snipe at their lies, bullshit, and obfuscation.Does anyone think that Canada will not regulate cannabis like alcohol and tobacco in 20 years? Vancouver smells like miracle plant. I know Blunt Brothers has open consumption of miracle plant and that it is common to see people smoke it on the street. There is bottled water from Canada but Vancouver air would be a Schedule 1 narcotic. And the good times that Martin presided over as finance minister are not so good and building prisons for people that grow laughing grass and turning users into cows of cash, is not going to be popular.People are just tired of prohibition. It makes no sense and anybody with sense knows so. It is a litmus test for corruption and stupidity in elected officials.Laughing grass is going to replace the alcohol age. A new wave of politician is going to replace the corrupt or idiotic politicians that support CP.The Toronto Globe and Mail poll that asked "If marijuana growers were licensed and all sales taxed, would the economic benefit outweigh the social harm?" ended up with 15056 Yes votes(69 %)and 6900 No votes(31 %). Now there is a clue for some prohibitionist that it is time to leave the wild side and joing the mild side. You know, the one calling for peace.Plus look at the demand that these two warehouses had to make the punishishment of the unlaw worthy of disregard. The laws are unjust and the misery of failed policy cannot be hidden now much less in the future when true intellectual summary is needed on the life support given to the wickedness of failure known as CP. Look at the people that consumed warehouses of cannabis. Do you think they want to keep corrupt politicians around that want to fine them and lock them up if they grow a plant or even 30,000 plants. Do you not think they talk to mom and pop and grandma and grandpa and see who has the best weed among the cousins come Christmas time.Martin can push his subsidize organized crime and bought of politicians and LEO fund bill. There is going to be resistance from now until it is finally settled with regulation. To put it simply for the simple and warped, Martin is about to make a fool out of himself. Any talk of a dividing line at 5,10,or 15 grams is going to bring out a laugh. Miracle plant did more for teaching people using English measurements the metric system than 13 years of public education(That is weak humor employing mild exageration). I can see the Internet polls at the 5000 cannabis websites Yahooka tracks asking, Do you think Canadians should be thrown in jail and given a criminal record for life if they haveA)5 grams- that is a pretty fat blunt considering black market pricesB)10 grams- that is enough for a couple on New Year's Eve, how much more do you want, can't you find some moreC)15 grams- Wow, that is over half an ounce. That could last any couple a whole week easy. Anybody that cannot live with that does not like shopping or driving and how would we sell cars and gasoline if people do not shop?D)Cannabis should be regulated like alcohol and tobacco and the difference between liberty and prison should not depend on one seed. Heed the need to free the weed, dweeb.Heed the need to free the weed, dweeb. That would make a great Bumper Sticker. You know, my mom told me I should sell BS's.
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