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Police Discover An Elaborate Drug Lab In A Wealthy Burbank Gated Community

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An elaborate drug lab was found in this house in the Burbank hills (Photo courtesy NBC4)
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Burbank police officers on Thursday uncovered a sophisticated drug lab inside an upscale home in the area's hillside estates.

Officers were tipped off to something strange going on inside the gated community at 1:20 a.m. on Thursday, when they received reports that a dog had gotten out of a house through a front door that was left wide open. Thinking that was suspicious, law enforcement showed up and spent 15-20 minutes trying to call someone to the door.

When no one answered, officers entered the residence, concerned that perhaps someone inside was in need of help. Instead, they came face-to-face with what Green calls an "elaborate... manufacturing operation."

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The 3400 block of Castleman Lane, where Burbank police officers discovered a drug lab
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According to Derek Green, the Burbank Police Department's public information officer, the lab was so elaborate that the department called in the California Department of Justice to investigate.

"This was someone that obviously knows what they're doing, who has probably been doing it for some time, and has invested a great deal of money in the process," said Green.

"If you are looking at drug grows, manufacturing operations, you have your fly-by-night grow, like an amateur would have in a closet," he said. "This is more likely connected to some type of distribution or sales operation. What that is, we just don't know."

The equipment was consistent with apparatus used to extract hash oil. That process can cause explosions if flammable liquid is involved, which often is.

A HazMat team was called to the house to determine if it was safe, and officers are now parsing the equipment.

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One person has been detained, but police don't yet know who owns the house or who lives in it.

Most homes in the neighborhood are valued at well over $1 million. Green says finding a drug lab in one of them is "uncommon for that area."