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Million-dollar drug bust in St. Pete

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.  (WFLA) - A major drug bust in St. Petersburg has led to one arrest and more than one million dollars' worth of marijuana off the streets.

Police say the operation spanned all the way to Los Angeles and most of the drugs and the money went right through the mail. The joint investigation by police and the U.S. Postal inspector led to the arrest of 23-year-old Vaughn Williams of St. Petersburg.

They uncovered a whopping 230 pounds of high-grade hydroponic pot at his apartment with a street value of $1,150,000. Investigators also found several guns and in total more than $150,000. St. Petersburg Police Chief Anthony Holloway calls it one big bust.

"Taking one of our significant distributors off the streets," said Holloway.

That major player is Vaughn Matthews who goes by the name "Nino Breeze" on the streets. "This is a guy who was very low key," Chief Holloway said.  "Stayed off the radar."

Vaughn doesn't have a job but lived a lavish lifestyle, including wearing a watch was worth $55,000. His hydroponic headquarters were based in the 800 block of Ibis Walk Place North. Even after police arrested Vaughn, he was still getting shipments of pot and money in his mailbox.

One of the last shipments, police said, was worth $6,000.

Chief Holloway says arresting a guy like Vaughn puts a huge dent in drug traffic in the city.

"Here's a guy that's really hurting our community because he's bringing all these drugs into our community and bringing it down and we don't want this person in our community," he said.

As for Vaughn's associates, Hollloway said it won't be too long until they find themselves behind bars.

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