Airbnb Cleanup Crew Finds 235 Pounds of Meth in Rental Home

A cleaning crew found over 200 pounds of meth at an Airbnb residence and police linked it to two suspects.
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Two suspects are accused of allegedly using an Airbnb rental to store a massive stash of drugs. According to the Alhambra Police Department (APD) in California, police officers found over 200 pounds of meth inside an Airbnb, leading to the arrest of two suspects driving a van nearby.

Two suspects allegedly used an Airbnb as a place to stash hundreds of pounds of meth, but were unaware they were being recorded by a Ring camera that police were able to obtain. Officers posted photos and a description of the bust on Instagram.

“Officers responded to the 1400 block of Ethel Ave. regarding boxes that were found by a cleaning crew in an Airbnb residence,” the APD posted on Instagram. “Upon arrival, officers located approximately 235 lbs. of methamphetamine. The suspects were caught on RING camera footage using a U-Haul van to transport the narcotics.”

The post shows large bundles of meth containing smaller bags, lined up on the ground, spread out. Police said the van was approaching the residence to return, then did a 180-degree turn the other way when they saw police approaching.

“While Officers were at the scene, the U-Haul van returned to the location, saw your APD, and quickly made a U-turn, thinking they would get away,” the post continues. “Ultimately, the two suspects were arrested and booked in APD Jail for transporting narcotics.”

According to Alhambra Police Sgt. Efren Tamayo, police waited for the suspects to return to pick up their stash. Tamayo said that details on the case were limited, however a Ring camera captured footage of both the two suspects and the van that was used to transport the meth. 

Airbnb quickly responded, indicating that the service does not tolerate illegal drugs in any case.

“The reported criminal activity has no place on Airbnb and we have removed a booking guest from the platform as investigations continue,” an Airbnb spokesperson told The Los Angeles Times. “Our team is working closely with the host to provide support, and we stand ready to assist the Alhambra Police Department with their investigations.”

The identities of the suspects were not released. 

Drug solicitation isn’t the only problem at Airbnbs. Parties taking place at Airbnb rentals in California have become a nuisance, with out-of-control events taking place more often, and many times, it involves illegal drugs. A few weeks ago nearby in Long Beach, California, neighborhood residents got sick of parties and banned unsupervised Airbnb rentals over concerns about drug-filled parties taking place. 

Andy Oliver, of the College Estates neighborhood of Long Beach, filed a petition to the city’s Community Development Department after out-of-state tourists renting out unhosted houses, throwing parties with drugs and blasting music loud. A shooting victim ended up outside Oliver’s house at one of such parties. “People have to live with this knowing that your house, your safe place, has now been violated by violent crime,” Oliver told CBS News at the time. Due to Oliver’s efforts,  over half of the approximately 800 homes in his area agreed to sign the petition. 

Cannabis At Airbnbs Is Another Story

While drugs are not tolerated on Airbnb rentals, some find ways to incorporate hemp or cannabis in ways that don’t conflict with the law. Airbnb partnered with a Sonoma County-based cannabis farm in 2022 to offer exclusive one-night stays.

The farm is located on 60 acres in Sonoma County, located southeast of Mendocino County, which is a famous region for prime cannabis cultivation. As is customary with Airbnb listings, this home’s official name is descriptive of what its hosts hope guests will experience during their stay: “Live the High Life at Sonoma Hills Farm.”

Staying at the farm doesn’t connect guests directly with any licensed cannabis plants or products, however. “Due to regulations and legal limitations, guests will not be visiting a licensed cannabis marijuana grow or interacting with cannabis marijuana,” the Airbnb listing reads

“Guests instead have access to a neighboring private home, vegetable garden and cannabis hemp farm. These plants look and smell identical to the cannabis marijuana plants, but contain less than 1% THC and are federally legal. In addition, they’ll have access to all of the other produce on the property.” The listing does mention a selection of CBD products from various companies in California, such as Green Bee Botanicals, Potli, Rose Los Angeles, and Jane West, as well as candles from Garden Society.

The listing also mentioned a partnership with Airbnb, which will be donating to a worthwhile nonprofit organization that strives to promote regenerative agriculture and restore climate stability. The rental was available for a limited time.

Airbnb does not allow illegal drugs at any of their rentals.

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