Police investigating marijuana grow operation in Amsterdam factory

L to R: Ruslan Blahiy, Dane Cooper, David Locket (Amsterdam PD)

AMSTERDAM, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A massive drug bust in Amsterdam netted hundreds of plants, thousands of dollars worth of equipment, and three suspects.

It was after the storms Thursday night that neighbors noticed the power going out inside an old six-story knitting factory.

Neighbors say they saw a flash of light going on through the building.

Police wanted to make sure no one was stealing anything from inside.

Chief Greg Culick says investigators interviewed one person inside, and that’s when they heard dogs barking. Once they made it to the sixth floor, they found a massive illegal grow operation.

With the thousands of dollars worth of equipment installed down two rows, the sophisticated grow operation was already growing hundreds of plants in pots. Police say they were all in their infant stages.

Three people have been detained:

  • Ruslan Blahiy, 43, with an address of the knitting factory; however, he has ties to Ukraine, police said
  • Dane Cooper, 34, Tannersville, N.Y.
  • David Locket, 37, Cambria Heights, N.Y.

All three were charged with Unlawfully Growing Cannabis, Criminal Possession of Marijuana in the Third Degree, and Conspiracy in the Fifth Degree. All three are in the Montgomery County Jail pending further court action.

Culick says there could be more people involved, and police are just scratching the surface on who is financing the grow operation.

With this being the biggest operation Amsterdam has ever seen State Police are helping with the investigation.

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