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Father, Son Arrested In Connection With Honey Oil Lab Explosion That Injured 5 Firefighters In Indio

INDIO (CBSLA) — A father and son who were at large for months after a honey oil lab exploded in their Indio home, injuring five firefighters, have been arrested.

indio honey oil explosin suspects
(credit: CalFire)

Alexander Ochoa, 32, was arrested on June 16 during a felony stop and is in custody on $250,000. His father, 60-year-old Javriel, was surrendered last Friday to authorities after learning he had a felony warrant for his arrest, but immediately posted bail, CalFire spokesman Capt. Specialist Kelly Becker said.

Their arrest stems from a fire that erupted at their home in the 83000 block of Long Cove Drive on Sept. 21, 2019. Firefighters arrived to find a heavily-involved garage fire with one burn victim.

Firefighters immediately began administer advanced life support to the burned resident, while others battled the blaze in an effort to save the rest of the home. During the firefight, there was an explosion from the garage, blowing five firefighters from the hallway into the kitchen area.

All five of the firefighters were hospitalized. One firefighter was knocked unconscious, while a second sustained burn injuries that kept him off the job for six weeks. All have since returned to duty, Becker said.

Both men failed to let firefighters know they were "walking into an active, large, illegal marijuana butane honey oil manufacturing operation," Becker said. They both discharged themselves from the hospital before CalFire officers could question them and were at large until their arrests last month.

Both men face several counts of causing a fire that causes great bodily injury and manufacturing a controlled substance. Alexander Ochoa is scheduled to make his first court appearance on July 9, while Javriel Ochoa is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 14.

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