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Explosion of possible drug lab in Moorpark home injures 2

June 9, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Detectives are investigating a possible drug lab at a Moorpark home after an explosion and fire inside the garage injured two people on Wednesday morning.

Neighbors reported hearing an explosion around 1:25 a.m. in the 4200 block of Cedarpine Lane.

Two men in their 30s were injured and transported to area hospitals for treatment. A woman and a young child were inside the home at the time, but were able to get out of the residence unharmed.

Fire officials said the blaze was mainly contained to the garage area of home. Detectives said it appears butane was being used in the garage to cook the stems of marijuana and something went wrong.

Ventura County Sheriff's Deputy Robert Berger said the culprits were likely performing what's called "honey-oil extraction," which is a process that extracts tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, from leftover portions of marijuana that's normally not smoked, like the stem of the leaf.

"Just the fact that they were doing the honey oil extraction, the hashish oil, we're looking at a very serious crime, a felony crime, said Berger.

Neighbors said they were awakened by the explosions.

"I thought it sounded like the fireworks over at the park. I got up to investigate because there were explosions and more explosions and more explosions," said neighbor Georgette McBreen. "So when I came outside, there was a big ball of fire."

Arson and narcotics investigators were looking into the incident.

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