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|Deputies Discover Marijana Stash and a 5-Foot Caiman in Palomares Hills Home|
|Wednesday, 16 January 2013 08:49|
(1) A five-foot caiman, a close relative of the alligator, was being used to guard a large quantity of marijuana in a Castro Valley home. The reptile, which was critically ill when sheriff’s deputies discovered it, later died at the Oakland Zoo veterinary hospital. (2) A 34-pound stash of processed and dried marijuana confiscated from a Mount Jasper Drive home was said to be worth about $100,000. (3) Assif Mayar, 32, of Castro Valley was arrested for possession of marijuana and animal cruelty after sheriff’s deputies discovered a critically ill caiman being used to guard the marijuana.
By Robert Souza
CASTRO VALLEY FORUM
Alameda County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a Castro Valley man at his Palomares Hills home last Tuesday, after it was discovered that he had 34 pounds of marijuana in a bedroom that was apparently being guarded by a live, five-foot dwarf caiman, a close relative of the alligator.
Assif Mayar, 32, was charged with felony possession of marijuana and, later, with animal cruelty after the large reptile, named “Mr. Teeth,” died at the Oakland Zoo’s veterinary hospital. Zoo officials said the caiman was undernourished and critically ill from apparent improper care.
State Fish and Wildlife officers also cited Mayar for illegal possession of a restricted-species animal.
Investigators said the large stash of dried and processed pot had a sales value of about $100,000.
“This was a weird one,” said Sheriff’s Sgt. JD Nelson. “We’ve seen our share of alligators and reptiles, but nothing like this.”
Mayar had lived at the home in the 19000 block of Mount Jasper Drive – not far from Jensen Ranch Elementary School – with his wife and young son for about two years.
He was arraigned at the Hall of Justice in Hayward on Thursday. Bail was set at $20,000 and he was ordered to appear back in court yesterday.