Marijuana operation raided in Douglas County
The Douglas Interagency Narcotics Team raided a large marijuana growing operation Tuesday in the 9000 block of Days Creek Cutoff Road in Canyonville.
The grow was being conducted on two parcels of farmland along the South Umpqua River a few miles east of Canyonville. There were two residences involved along with numerous outbuildings, recreational vehicles and barns.
The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office reported that the growing operation consisted of more than 100 hoop-style greenhouses, most of which were full of marijuana.
Carlos Flores Santacruz, 31, who lives at the site, was arrested and lodged at the Douglas County Jail on charges of unlawful possession and unlawful manufacture of marijuana.
Law enforcement also contacted and interviewed numerous individuals at the scene, most of whom were low-level immigrant workers. They were all released.
The team seized more than 66,000 live marijuana plants and in excess of 11,000 pounds of processed marijuana.
Approximately two weeks ago in a related investigation, the team seized more than 56,000 live marijuana plants at a nearby location in the 4000 block of Tiller Trail Highway. The two locations are similar in nature and were operated by the same individuals.
The investigation is ongoing and further arrests are anticipated.
None of the locations had legitimate hemp or marijuana permits through the state, police said.
Numerous large marijuana operations have sprung up recently in Southern Oregon, largely operated and controlled by foreign drug cartels, the sheriff’s office said.
The operations are causing environmental damage because of the volume of fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, garbage and human feces found at the sites, police said.
This year, police in Douglas County have investigated 22 illegal marijuana growing operations, eradicated approximately 300,000 marijuana plants, and seized approximately 50,000 pounds of dried, processed marijuana.