Priest put on leave after pot plants found in rectory

Discussion in 'Bizarre and Off-Beat News' started by Casshew, Jan 24, 2004.

  1. Casshew

    Casshew Former Member

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    The three books confiscated by Norton police seemed out of place in the private office of a Catholic priest.

    Opium for the Masses. Marijuana Growers Guide. Marijuana Medicine.

    But police said what was going on in the Prince of Peace Catholic Church rectory had little to do with church business.

    Following a search of the residence and office of the Rev. Richard A. Arko, Norton police announced Thursday they had arrested the 40-year-old pastor on a charge of illegal cultivation of marijuana.

    A second man, Jensen J. Powell, 24, who is unemployed and living at the four-bedroom Shannon Avenue rectory, was charged with trafficking in marijuana.

    Both are fifth-degree felonies carrying prison sentences of six months to a year.

    Police confiscated not only the books but also 35 marijuana plants ranging from 6 inches to 4 feet, grow lights, electric transformers and air purifiers, all from a room that police said was being used to grow marijuana.

    According to police, the plants were growing in a second-floor bedroom of the rectory.

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