Law enforcement agencies eradicate illegal crops

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On Friday November 5, the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office released the results of a major week-long joint marijuana eradication operation that took place between Tuesday October 26 and Friday November 5, 2021. Carried out in Largely through community resources from the Sheriff’s Office Unit (CRU), which is made up of a supervising sergeant and seven sheriff’s assistants, the operation targeted nearly 30 confirmed illicit marijuana crops both outdoors and indoors. interior throughout the county. This was the second such operation to begin in May over Memorial Day weekend.

“The Riverbank Police Department participated in the illegal marijuana eradication cultivation operation for two weeks,” said Riverbank Police Department Chief Ed Ridenour. “We have served search warrants at five locations in and around Riverbank. I was proud of the team. It takes a lot of work behind the scenes to thoroughly investigate illegal crops to ensure safe eradication operations for the public and our staff. Often these operations fuel criminal enterprises, have illegal firearms, sell illegal narcotics, have dangerous and dangerous electrical and structural modifications, and bring unnecessary violence to our communities.

Indoor grow warrants were issued and four outdoor grow operations at Riverbank and 3,171 plants were seized in and around town as part of the county’s grand total, along with 833 pounds of processed marijuana.

“Great work from the team,” said Ridenour.

The final statistical data for the operation included the following: 13,014 marijuana plants eradicated; of which 7,233 were fully budded marijuana plants; 3,233 plants were fully transported; 10 full-scale demolitions were completed by County Public Works; 1,493 plants were young clones; 2,656 pounds of fully processed marijuana plants were recovered. In addition, seven firearms were seized; $ 8,309 in cash was taken away; 16 people were physically arrested, reserved or cited for various offenses against the new law, aged 19 to 69; 18 locations had their electricity cut off by their respective local utility companies; 17 referrals for the application of the code were made; and no warrant resulted in referrals to child or adult protection services for unsafe living conditions.

The estimated total market value of the eradicated marijuana was almost $ 20.4 million.

Authorities said all of the efforts were the culmination of a months-long investigation of those who choose to disregard state, federal and local laws regarding growing marijuana. The sheriff’s department has joined forces with several other agencies to ensure the operation goes smoothly. All locations were subject to search warrants approved by local judges.

The people who assisted with the sweep were teams from the Northern California Bureau of Cannabis Control, specifically the Cannabis Control Unit, as well as Stanislaus County Public Works, Stanislaus Animal Services, Irrigation Districts. de Turlock and Modesto, Riverbank, Patterson and Stanislaus County Code Enforcement, Riverbank and Patterson Public Works, Pacific Gas and Electric, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, S / O Special Investigations, Air Support and SWAT, Fusion Center Crime Analyst / Statistical tracking team, and Waterford, Patterson, Hughson and Riverbank Police Services.

The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department released a statement at the end of the coordinated effort.

“We could not have carried out this large-scale, complex and well-choreographed operation without the help of the agencies that participated in it,” the statement said. “Our office would like to remind the public of the dangers of cultivating or cultivating marijuana illegally. Often, crops are the target of violent and armed burglaries, gunfire, aggravated assaults, kidnappings and / or burglaries.

Other dangers include the environmental fallout from toxic pesticides saturating the soil, gaseous vapors seeping into nearby structures, and fungal molds growing relentlessly in heat or high humidity. Utilities are often stolen from other customers. Additionally, people are trafficked outside of the United States as a less expensive option to provide the human capital needed to deal with illegal cultivation.

“The state and county have specific guidelines, monitoring mechanisms, means of revenue collection, and laws that must be followed for a legitimate or regulated business to engage in the legalized marijuana business,” continues the press release. “Each of these 29 targeted locations chose to ignore these mandates. “

Appropriate marijuana samples were taken for evidence, officials added, and the rest were cremated. The cases were referred to the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office for review.

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