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Possible illegal cannabis grow discovered on land owned by Maldonado family

Posted at 3:47 PM, Aug 09, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-09 18:47:53-04

San Luis Obispo County code enforcement officers are investigating a possible illegal cannabis grow on property owned by former California lieutenant governor Abel Maldonado. 

Art Trinidade, SLO County Code Enforcement supervisor, says his office was made aware of "lots of plants that appear to be cannabis."

He declined to say how and when the grow was discovered.

Trinidade says the county was contacted by the agent representing the farm, located somewhere within SLO County, and were told that the grow was not cannabis, but "industrial hemp grown for a university."

There are no other known hemp grows within the county, according to Trinidade. 

The Maldonados will now need to have certified testing of the plants done to show they are hemp and also provide proof of the "research institute relationship," Trinidade says.

Maldonado served as a Santa Maria City Councilmember and mayor in the 1990s and was later appointed and served as lieutenant Governor of California from 2010 to 2011.

Calls to him on Thursday went unanswered.