$80M Illicit MJ Grow-Op Discovered In Fresno Valley California

In #California, authorities in #Fresno #Valley uncovered a massive illicit #cannabis grow operation worth more than 80 #million #dollars. The county sheriff’s office, with help from members of the #National Guard, dismantled and disposed of the more than 21,000 #marijuana plants spread across 18 #greenhouses and 40 #acres, on a property near the city of #Mendota. Deputies first became aware of the site after smelling cannabis from 2 miles away in the air, while on a #routine #flight monitoring two other known #cultivation locations. Despite #recreational cannabis being #legal in California, industry experts speculate that high #taxes, excessive #licensing fees, and limited access have led to illicit #sales making up as much as 80 percent of the state’s #market. Detectives say the illegal marijuana grow, which was hidden from view by a dirt mound surrounding the property, is the most elaborate they’ve ever encountered, and believe a well-funded drug #cartel to be behind the #operation. While two #firearms were discovered during the raid, there were no people present at the time, though authorities estimate between 10 and 15 would be needed to maintain the #farm. Police plan on contacting the landowner, who took over the property in #October, as part of the ongoing criminal investigation into the matter.

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William Bradley

William Bradley

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