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House fire in Phoenix leads authorities to big stash of marijuana

PHOENIX — A house that caught fire in north Phoenix now is suspected of being part of a marijuana-grow operation.

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said after the blaze was put out, investigators found a sizable cache of marijuana out in the open of the home near 12th Street and Desert Hills Drive, east of Anthem.

An unidentified man who said he was house-sitting was not injured.

Authorities said a neighbor called in the fire early Monday. Firefighters said the blaze began in the garage then reached the house.

After investigators spotted the marijuana, they got a search warrant and later found what they described as possible lab equipment elsewhere on site.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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