November 4th, 2007 14:26 EST
Drugs were worth $50 million; 17 arrested in grow operation
The Drug Enforcement Administration and other law enforcement agencies today announced the successful eradication of 25,000 marijuana plants, with an approximate street value of $50 million in processed marijuana, and the arrests of 17 individuals involved in several marijuana growing operations in the Tonto National Forest in Arizona. Federal charges have been filed against 18 individuals by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Seventeen individuals are currently in custody; one remains at large.
Five separate grow operations have been eradicated during this growing season, which usually last from May to October. The marijuana cultivation operations, located entirely on federal land in the Tonto National Forest and in Gila County, were also supported by supply routes in Maricopa County. The federal charges resulted from investigations conducted by the Gila County Narcotics Task Force (comprised of the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the Gila County Sheriff’s Office), the U.S. Forest Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Phoenix Police Department. A chart of those arrested and the charges filed against them is located below.
"This eradication operation means that thousands of marijuana plants never made it into our neighborhoods, and millions of dirty dollars never made it into the drug trade," said DEA Special Agent in Charge Elizabeth W. Kempshall. "DEA will continue to support our law enforcement partners in attacking all aspects of drug trafficking and the violence that goes hand in hand with the distribution of these harmful substances."
U.S. Attorney Daniel G. Knauss said of this operation, “These operations were successful due to the highest levels of cooperation from federal, state, and local officials. I applaud the exhausting efforts and professionalism exhibited by all these agencies as they strive to make our federal land safer for recreational use and prevent this drug from reaching the streets.”
"These operations have been highly successful in reducing the number of plants grown on national forest lands in Arizona," stated Robin Poague, Assistant Special Agent in Charge for the Southwestern Region of the Forest Service. Most of the cultivation areas were located in remote areas off normal trails in or near Maple Springs, Pigeon Springs, Promontory Butte, See Springs, Gold Creek Canyon and Hinton Canyons within the Tonto National Forest. Paid to cultivate and water the plants, many of the defendants would live and work in the gardens for several days up
to several months at time. Others would re-supply them with materials to assist with plant cultivation as well as food and other supplies necessary for wilderness survival.
Gila County Sheriff John Armer stated that “The Gila County Narcotics Task Force is funded by a Byrne Grant administered through the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission and consists of the Gila County Sheriff’s Office, Arizona Department of Public Safety and the Gila County Attorney’s Office. Since 2003 the Task Force has eradicated in excess of 30 illegal Marijuana farms and a total of more than 200 thousand plants in the Gila County area. These seizures and eradications would have a street value as high as $170,000,000.”
"The Arizona Department of Public Safety is proud to be a part of the Gila County Narcotics Task Force. This successful eradication of a major drug operation will help keep Arizonans safe and will impact the flow of illegal drugs not just within the state but throughout the country." said Roger Vanderpool, Director of the Arizona Department of Public Safety.
“We are always pleased for the working relationship we have with all of our state and federal partners. We will continue to participate and do all we can to eradicate drug trafficking and the crimes associated with it from our community,” added Executive Assistant Police Chief Tom Lannon.
Custom writing company offers research papers, term papers, dissertations and essays writing assistance for students all over the world.
Stay in Vero Beach, Florida! Orchid Island Cottages
Fully Furnished Weekly or Monthly Rentals
Two bedrooms Beachside villas More Information
Category : Law
Texas Border Patrol Agent Sentenced for Civil Rights Violations
WASHINGTON – Pablo Rosario, a former U.S. Border Patrol Agent stationed in El Paso, Texas, was sentenced today in federal court in El Paso to 24
Posted 7 hours, 25 minutes ago
Rep. Darrell Issa Addresses CIA Employees
Rep. Darrell Issa of California visited CIA Headquarters on Tuesday to speak about the importance of having officers of Near Eastern descent serve in the Intelligence Community.
Posted Saturday, November 03, 2007
FBI, Anatomy of a Cyber Investigation
Ever wonder how we run a cyber investigation? Here's a good example…a potentially deadly threat that we ran to ground in