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Sheriff: Sophisticated, explosive drug lab found in Potter Valley

Deputies and detectives raiding a Potter Valley home Tuesday found it converted into an elaborate, explosive hash oil lab capable of making large amounts of concentrated cannabis, according to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies arrested Joseph Scorese, 30, of Lakeport, and Joseph Loren, 36, of Willits. The search turned up 48.3 pounds of concentrated cannabis, valued on the street at $770,000, and 1,150 pounds of cannabis, officials said in a news release Wednesday.

The suspects were at the property, in the 6600 block of rural Highway 20, when about 10 investigators from the Lake County sheriff’s narcotics bureau and the Mendocino County sheriff’s marijuana and major crimes task force arrived about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday with a search warrant.

Officials estimated the equipment in the 1,300-square-foot home to be worth more than $250,000.The two men were arrested on suspicion of making drugs using a chemical process, and possessing marijuana for sale. They were booked into the Mendocino County Jail, with bail set at $50,000 each. Narcotics detectives still are investigating, Bingham said.

-Randi Rossmann

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