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Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:51 PM

"OPERATION MOUNTAIN HIGH" YIELDS MULTIPLE DRUG ARRESTS FOR POT GROWING ON PUBLIC LANDS

Source: East County Magazine




November 14, 2012 (San Diego)-- Today U.S. State Attorney Laura Duffy called a press conference to announce the arrest of six out of 10 suspects wanted by federal authorities in relation to running illegal marijuana farms on state and federal lands in the East County and Riverside County.

"Drug agents on routine aerial surveillance happened to spot and remove a marijuana farm in Julian in the summer of 2010," said Duffy, explaining how the operation started. after the “Chariot Canyon Grow” operation.

What was unusual about this raid, according to Duffy, is that "In this case agents found more than plants and farmers. They found cell phones."

This intelligence cache allowed officers in the Narcotics Task Force to start to put together how the Sotelo Organization worked.

The distribution of marijuana ranged all the way to Northern California, Idaho and Utah. There were also contacts in Mexico; the investigation continues on the Mexican side of the Border. When asked about possible links to cartels, Duffy said that there were no links found, but the investigation is continuing.




Read more: http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/node/11726



By the way this is the largest, per officials, drug growing and distribution network.

If you are in public lands anywhere in the US and come across a grove, get away and contact law enforcement.

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Arrow 47 replies Author Time Post
Reply "OPERATION MOUNTAIN HIGH" YIELDS MULTIPLE DRUG ARRESTS FOR POT GROWING ON PUBLIC LANDS (Original post)
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 OP
msongs Nov 2012 #1
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #2
WheelWalker Nov 2012 #16
Major Nikon Nov 2012 #3
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #5
Lasher Nov 2012 #20
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #10
OnlinePoker Nov 2012 #21
CreekDog Nov 2012 #4
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #6
CreekDog Nov 2012 #13
Fumesucker Nov 2012 #9
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #11
CreekDog Nov 2012 #12
CreekDog Nov 2012 #14
Fumesucker Nov 2012 #17
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #18
sofa king Nov 2012 #35
MrSlayer Nov 2012 #7
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #8
Warren Stupidity Nov 2012 #22
randome Nov 2012 #24
Comrade Grumpy Nov 2012 #30
randome Nov 2012 #33
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #28
Floyd_Gondolli Nov 2012 #41
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #42
Floyd_Gondolli Nov 2012 #43
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #44
Floyd_Gondolli Nov 2012 #45
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #46
Floyd_Gondolli Nov 2012 #47
CreekDog Nov 2012 #15
Warren Stupidity Nov 2012 #23
CreekDog Nov 2012 #31
Warren Stupidity Nov 2012 #34
CreekDog Nov 2012 #36
randome Nov 2012 #37
Warren Stupidity Nov 2012 #39
CreekDog Nov 2012 #40
Bozita Nov 2012 #19
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #26
AngryAmish Nov 2012 #25
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #27
AngryAmish Nov 2012 #29
CreekDog Nov 2012 #32
bitchkitty Nov 2012 #38

Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:53 PM

1. hmm, if we could grow it at home that would not be needed. dumb feds nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #1)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:56 PM

2. Oh it gets better than just that.

My gut tells me welcome to the war on drugs Mexican style in the US....Santa Muerte is not something to trifle with. In Mexico followers have ahem, put bodies in vats of acid and decapitated others.

I asked, got the predicted answer...other local newsies were shocked, not the Mexican media.

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Response to msongs (Reply #1)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:16 PM

16. Exactly. Legalization, not decriminalization of personal use.

Decriminalizing personal use does nothing to eliminate the vast waste of resources directed at suppressing the trade in cannabis. Decriminalized users still have to break the law to obtain the herb, and associate with those who on many other levels are likely not law abiding citizens. Legalize and break the back of the illegal market, and redirect law enforcement resources to the suppression of corporate criminals. Legalize and promote the homegrown solution. That is my view as well.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:58 PM

3. I wonder if that's actually the way they were found

I've seen spectral analysis technology that allows large areas to be surveyed for pot by filtering aerial or satellite photography for the specific color of pot (or most anything else).

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #3)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:00 PM

5. Yup, in aerial reconassaince.

You are right...it's not just a chopper flying by. This s the back country I regularly cover fires at. The canopy is thick in locations described.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #5)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 03:17 AM

20. Living MJ plants emit a characteristic heat signature.

This is how the plants are often detected from helicopters that are equipped to recognize this heat. I think a flyover from such an aircraft is the most likely scenario.

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #3)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:07 PM

10. Oh and trivia, the photo...

After I got there I learned that cameras are allowed on press day with press credentials.

That is my cell phone, highly cropped.

Nothing to write home about, but good enough in a pinch.

:-;

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #3)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 04:16 AM

21. I was a search and rescue spotter in BC for a couple of missions in the '80s

We actually picked out the plantations easily just from the colour difference of the pot compared to the pine and spruce they were planted around. On the coast, it helped that the growers put up white plastic tarps to keep the torrential rains from washing their grow away. You see that, it's a pretty sure bet what you've got.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:59 PM

4. Good. Not a fan of the drug wars, but growing drugs on public lands is harmful

they dont' belong there and they are becoming a danger to the habitats themselves and often those who protect the drugs are endangering the visitors and staff that use the public lands properly.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #4)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:01 PM

6. Point made by local BLM director.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #6)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:13 PM

13. thanks for pointing that out

even if one is against the drug war and in favor of legalization, destruction of public lands through illegal (as in trespassing or misappropriation) is wrong and harmful.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #4)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:05 PM

9. Why not blame those who continue the drug war?

You don't see illicit corn farmers setting up hidden grows on public land.

The politicians have known all along that the drug war is a vicious and harmful lie.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #9)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:11 PM

11. I am all for legalizing at least weed

Can't wait for it to be rescheduled quite honestly, but they are dong a lot of damage, and these guys in particular are not precisely nice folks.

My belief is that it will take a month or two, like with prohibition, for shit like this to collapse while legal operations take over. But until then, there is real damage being done, and I know some of these areas, there is also some danger of a nice wild fire.

Many reasons why I can't wait for rescheduling.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #9)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:11 PM

12. Because harming public lands is wrong, whether you do it by poaching, growing drugs...

or any other ways that harm public lands.

you want to apologize to them? go ahead.

i think most drugs should be legalized, but even if they are, anyone who grows drugs, uses pesticides in our national or state parks should have his ass thrown in jail for a long, long time.

this is environmental destruction, pollution and often violence towards those who legitimately use these lands.

these are scum.

you grow a little pot in your house, i don't have an issue with that. you grow drugs on public lands, cut back native vegetation, hire armed people to keep the public out of the drug fields you've planted on *their* lands, that's low and illegal. bye bye from me and no sympathy.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #9)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:14 PM

14. By the way, those are *my* lands TOO, you don't get to decide that my lands don't get protection

from this crap that is polluting them, causing them to be dangerous places for visitors and by destroying native habitat that is for legal users and visitors who use the lands in keeping with the reasons they are protected as well as in a way that will allow future generations to use them.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #14)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:52 PM

17. The lands wouldn't *need* "protection" from illicit grows if it wasn't for the drug war.

Be angry at those who are actually the root of the problem, the politicians who continue the drug war against the vast amount of evidence that it's counterproductive, leading to exactly the sort of thing this OP is about.

America is so fucked up in head about this subject, it's all but impossible to talk rationally about it.





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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #17)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 12:01 AM

18. Actually this OP isa local news story

I covered.

And some of us can talk rationally. Yes, it needs to be legalized...rescheduling will com first...at the same time we can also recognize the issues with this.

Oh and for god sakes I had an AK round kill a radiator and another go through and though my ambulance. So I think I can talk with some personal authority about this.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #9)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:52 PM

35. Oh, they do it, too.

Farmers and ranchers, I recall, are among the worst offenders according to the BLM. They routinely violate buffer zones, pull down fences, kill off game along the border, move borders, let dogs and cats run loose, pollute, and otherwise encroach on protected land everywhere that private land abuts public land.

But really only marijuana growers have an incentive to go deep into public land, disturb the environment there, set booby traps, and ward off people who wish to use the land as it is intended. So your essential point is spot-on.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:01 PM

7. Boooooooo. Like they have nothing better to do.

 

And, no, I will not be ratting on anyone.

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Response to MrSlayer (Reply #7)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:04 PM

8. Actually these guys are not the peaceful kind.

But hey, whatever.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #8)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:08 AM

22. The violence is caused by prohibition, not cultivation.

Every harm mentioned in this thread is a direct consequence of prohibition. The drug war is an insane policy that harms society and enriches gangsters on both sides of the law.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #22)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:52 AM

24. No. Violence is caused by people. Not regulations.

I understand your point but the responsibility for violence lies with those initiating it.

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Response to randome (Reply #24)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 12:12 PM

30. Prohibition creates the structural conditions that make violence a useful option.

It is a mistake to consider violence nothing more than personal pathology.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #30)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 01:05 PM

33. I disagree. Violence is never an answer when talking about growing a harmless plant.

Someone's desire to 'have fun' or 'get high' should NEVER be an excuse to harm someone. The fact that violence is considered an appropriate response by many when growing marijuana is proof that people cannot rationally approach the subject.

If the government outlawed just about anything else -say, college ruled paper- most people would go on about their lives without it. But when it's marijuana, we're all supposed to jump up and down and scream, "Authoritarians!"

The reason marijuana is not legal now is because most people really don't care about it. And once the government outlawed it, those people still shrugged and said, "Who cares?"

Now when it comes to decriminalization, I think we can all agree on that.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #22)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 11:35 AM

28. I am not arguing for prohibition

I am just stating a fact. This is a fact, these guys are not peaceful growers...

I have also stated in this thread repeteadly that I am for full legalization.

Fun fact, lets assume the Feds tell California " go ahead, carry on." I still will not be able, legally, to buy or posses it. I don't have a prescription.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #8)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:49 PM

41. Why do you keep saying that?

 

Nobody thinks Mexican drug cartels are made up of "nice" people. Even a child would grasp that concept. Your belief that people need to be reminded of this - incessantly - is weird and nonsensical.

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Response to Floyd_Gondolli (Reply #41)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:50 PM

42. You could always trash the thread

Or put me on ignore if you really object to this. It is that simple you know.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #42)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:59 PM

43. Answer the question

 

In what world do people believe Mexican drug cartels are made up of "nice" people?

I know a lot of liberals and conservatives and middle of the road folks. None of them would, in any scenario, say Mexican drug cartels have any redeeming qualities at all.

And yet you feel the need to state that over and over again as if you are privy to some inside information that lends you extra credibility.

We get it. They're bad.

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Response to Floyd_Gondolli (Reply #43)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 08:11 PM

44. You can trash the thread

I was answering to the other poster. If you have a problem with that statement of fact, that is truly your problem, not mine.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #44)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 08:18 PM

45. Except it's not a fact, it's your opinion

 

And a rather ludicrous opinion.

And by the way, people who are arrested are not defendants until they enter a plea.

Until then they are simply "arrested" or "arrested on complaints of...".

This can be found in any AP Style book.

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Response to Floyd_Gondolli (Reply #45)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 08:20 PM

46. Yup, sure, you can take it to the editor

Have an excellent life

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #46)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 08:27 PM

47. Nice job

 

Your bizarre take on the issue is challenged and you punt.

Someone points out that your knowledge of basic concepts in journalism is lacking and you refer him to your editor.

It doesn't seem like you take a lot of pride in your work.

And I pity any editor that has to read your copy with that shitty attitude. It must be excruciating to go down into your rabbit hole on a regular basis.

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Response to MrSlayer (Reply #7)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:16 PM

15. growing drugs on public lands is HARMFUL

if you want to allow them to harm our wildlife, habitats and endanger hikers and visitors through their chemicals, through their environmental destruction and through their booby traps. that's not OK.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #15)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:09 AM

23. So end prohibition. No more illegal cultivation on public lands.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #23)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 12:59 PM

31. that will not end illegal cultivation on public lands

these are two different issues.

why are smart people like you unable to understand this?

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #31)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:51 PM

34. no they are the same issue.

You tell me how many hops farmers are illegally cultivating on federal lands. Why aren't they? Oh that's right, it is legal to grow hops.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #34)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:56 PM

36. so you are okay with destruction of public lands while you wait for prohibition to end?

if you are okay with environmental destruction of our public lands, then you aren't an environmentalist.

which is sad, for a long time, i thought you were.

what is also sad is that you cannot seem to hold in your brain two simultaneous ideas:

1) you can be against the drug war
2) you can also be against cultivation of any kind on public lands, especially one's that introduce harmful pesticides (this one does) and remove native habitat (this one does!)

you can hold those two ideas simultaneously!

except, perhaps, you are so limited intellectually that you don't think one can believe those two things at the same time.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #36)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 03:11 PM

37. It's simple. People don't have any choice but to worship the weed. They MUST get high.

So it's really everyone else's fault that they are growing crops on federal land.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #36)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 03:38 PM

39. where did I say that?

I'll try again: if you wish to actually end these sorts of activities, end prohibition. If instead you just like to feel good about punishing "bad guys", why then carry on with the failed idiotic prohibitionist nightmare.

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #39)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 07:14 PM

40. because you were arguing with me and i never discounted prohibition in the long term

i only argued that this needed to be dealt with in the short term, regardless of whether prohibition stays or goes.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 02:21 AM

19. Face it! The inevitable outcome of the war on MJ has been known for a long time.

The sooner, the better.

But the for-profit prison corporations and the state and local police departments who rely on the drug forfeiture laws want to delay it forever.

You can compare a for-profit prison corporation to a hotel operation. Higher occupancy means greater profits. An empty cell hurts the bottom line. Is it any wonder these folks lobby like hell against any change in the laws?

And the financially-strapped local cops?

The drug forfeiture laws allow these folks the opportunity for bigtime financial bonanzas on drug busts involving MJ. I found myself caught behind a cop car at a stop light. On the back bumper was a statement saying that that particular cop car was purchased with drug forfeiture funds.

Infuckingsanity!

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Response to Bozita (Reply #19)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 11:10 AM

26. You know what is funny of this post

Locally we have been following the travails of ASA and the local clinics certified by the Sheriffs led by a republican who is no fan. Completely separate, the rads on those same legal growth organizations under California state law, were done by the Feds, led by a dem. it is hysterics. I know.

Moreover, that OP is n actual story in an actual paper from a press release in the morning at the Federal Building. And the people arrested are not nice.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 09:17 AM

25. Want lots of cheap and great pot? Let them grow it in the midwest farm belt

Drive from Chicago to St. Louis. Millions of acres of flat, well irrigated land. I bet pot will fetch a higher price than say soybeans. There is an upper bound on how much people will smoke.

Crimony this war on MJ is stupid.

If it could be grown legally, then this crap will not happen.

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Response to AngryAmish (Reply #25)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 11:31 AM

27. But until it does

I am serious as a heart attack, you come across one of these in public lands back away and call 911. It's not the plant, it's the guards with shotguns, rifles and traps.

The story has the facts of the case, some taken from the presser, some from the press packet. This is a just the facts

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #27)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 11:53 AM

29. No doubt my friend

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Response to AngryAmish (Reply #25)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 01:00 PM

32. and in the meantime? get it OFF public lands --it is dangerous, harmful, polluting and a menace

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Original post)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 03:33 PM

38. I used to say, why not just move

your grow indoors? Then I had an outdoor grow this summer...sunshine and fresh air add something that no HID light can ever match!

That said, bummer about the public lands. If they'd just legalize it, like sane people want, the problem would not be a problem any more. It would simply disappear, without effort, without the millions spent on this Operation Mountain High.

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