Massive grow op eradicated on Hoopa Valley tribal lands

Posted on September 7th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , .

More than 26,000 cannabis plants from what authorities called a "sophisticated grow operation" were eradicated on Hoopa Valley tribal land in California's Humboldt County on Aug. 7. The Hoopa Tribal Police worked with the Sheriff's office, the Humboldt County drug task force, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the US Marshals Office, the California Department of Justice Narcotics Enforcement, the Bureau of Land Management and the Campaign Against Marijuana Planting, according to a statement from the office of the sheriff. The Hoopa Valley Tribe, already hit hard by the methamphetamine plague, expressed outrage that large-scale growers had trespassed on their lands.

The grow op was discovered after biologists and foresters conducting nighttime spotted-owl surveys heard shots fired during multiple trips, the sheriff’s office said. Tribal authorities alerted police, who did helicopter reconnaissance and found a series of five-acre plots, interconnected by trails.  "The gardens were large, cleared areas with marijuana planted in rows, almost like corn," Sheriff Mike Downey said.

Tribal chairman Leonard Masten said the operation posed a potential environmental threat from fertilizers and pesticides that could run off into nearby Mill Creek and watershed areas, a source of salmon for the tribe. "We're very conscious of what we do on our land, and it's our responsibility to protect it so that, 100 years from now, new generations coming up still have it," Masten said. (Indian Country Today, Aug. 10; Eureka Times-Standard, Aug. 9)

Image: Hoopa Valley Tribal Museum


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