BIZARRE: Maraschino Cherry Tycoon’s Factory BUSTED For Doubling As Elaborate Marijuana Growing Operation [Video]

Bizarre and tragic. A successful business known all over the country and an owner that had everything you could want. But it wasn’t enough, so he went into the mega-pot business to cash in. Someone reports him for dumping chemicals in the water and cops come sniffing around. And they have really good noses. They smelled the pot and said they’d be back with a warrant. The owner, Arthur Mondella, went in the bathroom… yelled at his sister to take care of his kids and shot himself. An inglorious end and a waste. This is what greed and immorality bring – desperation, criminality and death. I feel sorry for his family.

PHOTO: Investigators discovered a marijuana growing operation at Dell’s Maraschino Cherries factory when they were investigating a complaint of illegal chemical dumping in the water of the Red Hook section of Brooklyn, N.Y., Feb. 24, 2015.”

PHOTO: Owner Arthur Mondella died in a hospital of gunshot wounds following the operation.

From ABC News:

In a scene reminiscent of the TV show “Breaking Bad,” New York City investigators raided the business of one of the nation’s largest processors of maraschino cherries — only to find that his Brooklyn factory also allegedly served as a marijuana growing operation, authorities said.

Investigators returned to the factory today in the Red Hook section, a day after the owner shot and killed himself in an apparent suicide as authorities raided it. police said.

There’s a good chance the cherry atop your sundae or at the bottom of your Manhattan is from Dell’s Maraschino Cherries, a family business founded in 1948 that now appears to have also hosted what sources described to ABC News as a large-scale, elaborate marijuana growing operation.

A team of city and state environmental regulators, along with prosecutors from the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, had been at the company for several hours Tuesday investigating a complaint of illegal chemical dumping in the waters off Red Hook, prosecutors said.

At first owner Arthur Mondella, 57, cooperated with the search, police said. Then, as investigators discovered “flimsy shelving and a faint smell of marijuana,” a source briefed on the investigation said, Mondella became increasingly vague.

When a team member said, “Well we’re going to get a warrant to get behind this wall” that’s when Mondella “excused himself to his private bathroom where he apparently shot himself and died at a local hospital,” a statement from the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office said.

Prior to the gunshot, a source said Mondella yelled to his sister, who had been standing outside the bathroom: “Take care of my kids.”

About 80 pounds of marijuana were recovered in three huge bags. Hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash was also found on the property, authorities said.

Several luxury cars were also recovered, including a Rolls-Royce, a Porsche and Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Mondella has a couple prior arrests, but they are sealed. A previous 2011 arrest for assaulting his second wife at their former Brighton Beach home had been dropped, authorities said.

Dell’s Maraschino Cherries had recently undergone a $5 million makeover of its Red Hook plant which employs a dozen people.

The investigation into environmental crimes continues though it remains unclear whether anyone would now face charges.

Wonder if he was mobbed up too. Can I just ask why his prior arrests are sealed? Curious. Surely, there are others there involved. This sad story is nowhere near done. I think the whole country has flipped… things are sooo bad and depressing under the Obama regime, normal people are saying ‘what the hell?’ and just doing whatever because they think it doesn’t matter anymore. Oh, but it does. This is just one more sad example of a life that went way off the rails, with no consideration on how it could impact the children. Suicide is a coward’s way out. No one lifted an eyebrow at a 5 million dollar remake of a business that employs 12 people? No one wanted to see and now it is too late. No one wins here… no one at all.

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Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

Terresa Monroe-Hamilton is an editor and writer for Right Wing News. She owns and blogs at She is a Constitutional Conservative and NoisyRoom focuses on political and national issues of interest to the American public. Terresa is the editor at Trevor Loudon's site, New Zeal - She also does research at You can email Terresa here. NoisyRoom can be found on Facebook and on Twitter.

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