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Multi-agency investigation leads to seizure of drugs and guns

A two-county investigation into money laundering and marijuana distribution has ended in the seizure of 161 pounds of marijuana, small amounts of heroin, cocaine and psilocybin mushrooms, 23 firearms, scales and packaging material, police reported.

Investigators from interagency drug-enforcement teams in Jackson and Josephine county — Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement, also known as MADGE, and Rogue Area Drug Enforcement, also known as RADE — got a search warrant for a property in Williams early this month, a news release today said.

They searched the Panther Gulch Road home of Michael Canepa, 53, on Feb. 1. Canepa wasn't home, but police found boxes of dried marijuana, as well as guns, the release said.

The continuing investigation led police to Canepa at a Grants Pass hotel on Feb. 11. Detective found a small amount of heroin in the room, police said. He was arrested on charges of possession, delivery and manufacture of marijuana and possession of heroin. He was booked into Josephine County Jail, but has since been released.

Authorities said multiple investigations related to this case are ongoing.

MADGE and RADE are interagency narcotics enforcement teams. MADGE is comprised of members of Medford police, the Jackson County Sheriff's Department, Oregon State Police, the FBI, Jackson County Community Justice and the Jackson County District Attorney's Office. RADE is made up of officials from the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety, OSP, the Josephine County District Attorney's Office, and Josephine County Community Corrections.

— Ryan Pfeil