Metro

R.I. man allegedly ran marijuana operation in Stoneham

Detectives and federal agents removed approximately 480 marijuana plants from the Stoneham house that caught fire in June.

Detectives and federal agents removed approximately 480 marijuana plants from the Stoneham house that caught fire in June.

A Rhode Island man accused of running a marijuana-growing operation, which authorities discovered when a fire broke out inside a Stoneham apartment in June, will be arraigned on a number of drug charges Friday, police said.

Jason D’Anna Jr., 35, of Barrington, allegedly was running a complex drug-producing operation in an apartment at 10 Hersam St. that involved more than 400 marijuana plants, heat lamps, and an irrigation system, Stoneham Police Chief James McIntyre said in a statement.

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D’Anna has been charged with possession of marijuana, a Class D substance; intent to distribute a Class D substance; and distribution of a Class D substance. Police had been looking for D’Anna since the apartment, in which they believe he was a tenant, caught fire in June, McIntyre said. After putting out the fire, firefighters found the drug operation and brought police in to investigate, officials said.

Authorities obtained a search warrant, and police detectives and agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration found several jars of marijuana buds inside the apartment and various other drug paraphernalia, McIntyre said.

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D’Anna was considered a person of interest in the drug investigation, said John M. Guilfoil, a spokesman for Stoneham police. He was sought for questioning, and turned himself in, in late June.

D’Anna will be arraigned Friday in Woburn District Court.

Trisha Thadani can be reached at trisha.thadani@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @TrishaThadani.
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