December 7, 2012: The District Attorney’s Office today charged 41-year-old Vinh Quang Nguyen with Possession with Intent to Distribute, Risking a Catastrophe, Endangering the Welfare of a Child (EWOC), and Knowing and Intentional Possession of a Controlled Substance (K&I) for a large marijuana growing business operating out his home in Fishtown.
Nguyen was arrested on Thursday, December 6th at his home on the 2300 block of Frankford Ave. When members of the District Attorney’s Dangerous Drug Offenders Unit and the DEA went into the home they discovered 343 full grown marijuana plants, 150 marijuana plants in the incubation stage, and three large bags of cut marijuana. Many of the plants were over five feet tall. In all over 500 pounds of marijuana were recovered from the house. The street value of the marijuana is approximately three to ten thousand dollars per pound.
There was an elaborate and dangerous electrical wiring system hooked up in the home operating heat lamps used to grow the plants. Agents also discovered two pots of boiling water with fabric softener inside that were attached to the vent system of the house. The defendant was attempting to mask the pungent odor of marijuana in the home with the fabric softener fumes. Nguyen’s two small children also lived in the house, and their beds were just 15 feet away from the rooms containing the plants. The children were at school at the time Nguyen was arrested.
This investigation was a joint operation between the DA’s Dangerous Drug Offender’s Unit and Philadelphia members of the DEA. Nguyen was arraigned last night and is being held on 1 (m) million dollars bail. His next court listing is December 27, 2012 in courtroom 603.