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Women Sue SoCal Edison for $140,000 Bill Generated by Pot Growing Operation in Corona Rental

The agency apparently cut off their electricity when they refused to pay a massive bill allegedly generated by a tenant in their Corona home-- a tenant that is accused of using the power to help grow marijuana.

Photo: Getty
Photo: Getty

Two Rowland Heights women sued Southern California Edison Wednesday for cutting off their electricity over their refusal to pay a nearly $140,000 bill that they allege was generated by a tenant growing marijuana in a home the family owned and leased in Corona.

Shu Chih Sun and her daughter-in-law, Mitha Pratiwi, are seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages on allegations of breach of service agreement and both intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress.

They also sought -- but were denied -- a temporary restraining order that would have directed Edison to return power to the home. But Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Robert O'Brien set a March 12 hearing on the plaintiffs' request for a preliminary injunction, according to attorney Michael Lo, who is representing the two women.

"Hopefully the court will see it our way," Lo said.

An Edison representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The two women live in Rowland Heights with Pratiwi's husband and the couple's 5-month-old daughter, Lo said. The Trot Avenue house is currently being served by a generator that provides enough power for lights, but not for heating and refrigeration, according to Lo.

"It's kind of depressing," Lo said.

According to the complaint, Pratiwi's husband signed an agreement with tenant Dominic Do to lease the couple's home in Corona from February 2009 until October 2011. Do stayed on a month-to-month basis after the lease expired and was arrested for illegally growing marijuana there last March, the suit alleges.

Although the Edison service at the Corona property was under Pratiwi's name, Do was required to pay the bills, according to the suit.     Last April 11, Pratiwi received a bill from Edison for $138,577 for "unauthorized use of service from March 21, 2010, to March 20, 2013," according to the plaintiffs.

Pratiwi and her husband cooperated with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and her spouse identified Do from a photo lineup, according to the suit. An investigation found that Do, who was using the name Raymond Lam, grew marijuana on the Corona property by bypassing the Edison meter, the suit alleges.

In November, Pratiwi received a demand for payment from Edison under threat of a disconnection of electricity. Sun received a similar notice in January, according to the suit, which says the electricity was  turned off on Feb. 6.


– City News Service. 

brendables February 24, 2014 at 05:34 AM
SCE has gotten out of hand! If the owners didn't know about the pot growing, why should they have to suffer the long arm of SCE..don;t you think the charge of $138,000 is a bit much? The way I read it it isn't for electricity used it's for "misuse" of their service.
brendables February 24, 2014 at 05:38 AM
Souterbelle, SCE doesn't get off their duff to go to anyone's house anymore....I paid approximately $8000.00 to them in the past 13 months! I live in a mobile home, when I asked them to please send someone out to check my meter, they said "it seems to be running correctly" as they checked it from their office. I then asked how to read the meter and was put on eternal hold!!!Now they won't even talk to me!
Alek J Hidell February 24, 2014 at 10:20 AM
Using that logic, the owners of rented out crackhouses are not responsible. They can just say "duh, we didn't know"... No Brenda, you own a house, its still your house, you are responsible---you want to make money renting out to strangers?--better know who they are. Oh and its smarter to put the electric in TENANT's name.. Those fools!
Alek J Hidell February 24, 2014 at 10:27 AM
Using that logic, the owners of crackhouses can just ignore what happens there. No, if you own a house, you are responsible for what goes on there. Better know who you rent to , if you want to make money off that house. and its a lot smarter to put the electric in the TENANTS name! those fools! Pay up. and if I was a neighbor I wouldnt like that generator, all that noise and fumes, Shut it off.
southernbelle February 24, 2014 at 10:48 AM
^^agree--as an owner YOU are responsible. What you're suggesting Brenda is much like if a business offers endless amounts of alcohol to someone, that someone runs over and kills another run their parking lot--then saying it is not the responsibility of the business owner to administer responsible goods to their patrons, nor monitor or have ANY CLUE whatsoever, what any of their patrons are doing inside the establishment. Um…if you paid over $8000 in a mobile home over the span of 13 months---you aren't very bright with your money. The very first month you should've been knocking down the door at SCE, and raising hell to a very loud level. It's foolish to just keep paying and not demand better service. SCE showed up one morning on my front lawn, started spray painting an orange line about 4 ft in from the street. Never knocked, never gave me notice… I went outside and asked what was happening. They told me our neighbors were having trouble and the line was best accessed from MY front lawn! They thought they were going to dig a damn trench the entire length of my lawn!! I looked at these ol' boys (all about 250 +lbs, bearded, tattoo'd, etc) and said just one thing, "OH HELL nooo!" That's about all a man needs to hear from a southern woman to know he best have a plan B, because his plan A ain't EVEN going to happen!! I wrestled with SCE for over 2 weeks, they'd show up, I'd walk out. They'd call, I'd say NO! I won. They ended up digging up the street PAR had to come fix some things, they ended up digging in THE neighbors yard who had the problem (ruined their lawn instead of mine!) and that was that. Btw, from the first time I stated my "Oh Hell No," with feet planted firmly, hands on hips, eyes looking straight at the foreman---I had their respect. hahahaha--I still remember as I said it to the foreman in the corner of my eye the worker who had already started digging, stuck his shovel right back in the dug up dirt, without a second guess, and just started piling it right back in the hole he'd made! hahahahahahahahaha you should a seen the look on that kids face!! hahahahhaahaha

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