Deputies bust Santa Cruz Mountains marijuana garden, but not before growers get part of the crop

Sheriff's deputies and state drug agents ripped out marijuana plants worth more than $1 million from an illegal garden in a remote area of the Soquel Demonstration Forest on Monday, but not before the growers had harvested about half of the pot and fled. Full Story
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Really Awesome

Santa Cruz, CA

#1 Jul 7, 2009
No one cares anymore about you busting a few pot plants. IT'S A PLANT! Move on to WAAAAAAAAAAY more important uses of our law enforcement's time.

OMG! He's smoking a joint! Arrest him! Yeah! Another pot smoker off the street!
RWC

United States

#2 Jul 7, 2009
Some do care when these usually armed idiots move in, steal lumber to build gardens, steal water, spread poison around and make a mess of your land.
Jaydog

San Jose, CA

#3 Jul 7, 2009
RWC wrote:
Some do care when these usually armed idiots move in, steal lumber to build gardens, steal water, spread poison around and make a mess of your land.
so help us legalize it so people won't need to do that!
dubious

Santa Cruz, CA

#4 Jul 7, 2009
How do you get buds with 16 hours of daylight? Sounds fishy to me. Most plants want more night before they bud.
Willie

Missoula, MT

#5 Jul 7, 2009
"so help us legalize it so people won't need to do that!"

You got that right!
Grow it out in the Central Valley with a center pivot irrigation system.
At least be efficient about it.
caro quintero

Santa Cruz, CA

#7 Jul 7, 2009
Bob Marley!! aloha bro!! Hello... this is Santa Cruz!!!!!
Rocket J Squirrel

Santa Cruz, CA

#8 Jul 7, 2009
lets recap this kids, cartels move in and at some point, they are better armed than police, have anti aircraft weapons, electronics, influence, locally laundered money and a private shadow army... Yep, a real benign plant. This aint yer daddy's pot garden anymore....
Barney

Santa Cruz, CA

#9 Jul 7, 2009
Oooh. Those cartels pay better, and are always hiring.
SantaCruzDude

Sunnyvale, CA

#10 Jul 7, 2009
Way to go jerks. Money well spent. NOT. Go bust some drunk drivers or child molesters.
DBS

Fremont, CA

#11 Jul 7, 2009
But BJ the FAT whackjob says there are no cartels from Mexico in the growing business.

And there is no environmental damage either.
disabuser

Antioch, CA

#12 Jul 7, 2009
"The biggest thing is the destruction of our public lands," he said, listing off the damage gardens cause, including water diversion, animal poaching, the use of illegal pesticides and littering. "Those things are as big or bigger than the fact they're growing an illegal drug."
How much time can you get and have people received for " water diversion, animal poaching, the use of illegal pesticides and littering" as opposed to the cultivation of marijuana?
Last year, sheriff's deputies ... raided 28 outdoor cultivation site. No arrests were made during any of those busts.
So it seems the biggest risk for growers is losing their investment in their grows. If Mexican drug cartels are running these grows, then you just need enough of them going so that some are successful. It seems pretty obvious that under those conditions they are a good business model and sure to continue.
mad men

Santa Cruz, CA

#13 Jul 7, 2009
Unlike most of the pot gardens the Sheriff's Office targets, the small grow in Nisene Marks likely was planted by a local, Yanez said.

grow local, buy local! just like the bumper stickers advocate.
Betsy

San Jose, CA

#14 Jul 7, 2009
So, CA has no money for schools, the sick, or the elderly, but they have money to run CAMP??? Nice prioritizing.

“Pearls before swine”

Since: Mar 08

Santa Cruz, CA.

#15 Jul 7, 2009
FROM THE ARTICLE: "Based on the setup, Yanez suspected the garden was the work of a Mexican drug cartel."

BECKY: Let me get this right. They bust NO ONE. But they tell the public this garden in the middle of nowhere is the work of "MEXICAN" organized crime? That is racist. It's fear-mongering. And its unsupported by any evidence---'based on the setup?" What does THAT mean?

Also, they always tell the number of plants and NEVER the amount of acreage under cultivation. My guess is this garden was less than 3 acres. The Soquel Demonstration forest is about 5 sq. miles.

1 square mile is equal to 640 acres. So that means that this grow took up less than 0.09% of the Soquel Demonstration forest. They say "illegal" pesticides but pesticides are not illegal. Marijuana generally doesn't need pesticides. I do not think that this find justifies the expense, the violation of the privacy of residents, nor represents the presence of Mexican organized crime in our county.

Since: May 09

Santa Cruz

#16 Jul 7, 2009
disabuser wrote:
<quoted text>
...If Mexican drug cartels are running these grows, then you just need enough of them going so that some are successful. It seems pretty obvious that under those conditions they are a good business model and sure to continue.
There is also the demand side of the equation which despite environmental destruction and a pesticide laden product continues to be seemingly endless.
Hank

Santa Cruz, CA

#17 Jul 7, 2009
Becky Johnson wrote:
FROM THE ARTICLE: "Based on the setup, Yanez suspected the garden was the work of a Mexican drug cartel."
BECKY: Let me get this right. They bust NO ONE. But they tell the public this garden in the middle of nowhere is the work of "MEXICAN" organized crime? That is racist. It's fear-mongering. And its unsupported by any evidence---'based on the setup?" What does THAT mean?
Also, they always tell the number of plants and NEVER the amount of acreage under cultivation. My guess is this garden was less than 3 acres. The Soquel Demonstration forest is about 5 sq. miles.
1 square mile is equal to 640 acres. So that means that this grow took up less than 0.09% of the Soquel Demonstration forest. They say "illegal" pesticides but pesticides are not illegal. Marijuana generally doesn't need pesticides. I do not think that this find justifies the expense, the violation of the privacy of residents, nor represents the presence of Mexican organized crime in our county.
You are sweet to argue that side of things, but you also don't have any evidence to back up your assumptions.
Sceptic

San Jose, CA

#18 Jul 7, 2009
I don't drink alcohol....just don't enjoy the taste or high...
and I don't smoke tobacco...don't enjoy the nicotine high or the smell...
but I want these things legal so I don't have a society poisoned/funded with violence and corruption of organized crime groups.
For Gods sake, let's cut the legs from underneath organized crime and legalize this. Cutting off their source of income, is the only way to fight these ever increasing gangs. Prohibition failed with alcohol and is with tobacco too.
The Scream

Santa Cruz, CA

#19 Jul 7, 2009
Legalize it, tax it, let the money go to legit individuals instead of criminal gangs, some of which have connections to the street gang violence you all are so concerned with.

There's a lot of money to go around, just too much of it goes to criminals -- in Mexican drug gangs, on Wall Street and in the board rooms, and in Washington.

So legalize pot, make money -- and put a lot of lawyers, bureaucrats, and prison guards out of business.
mountainboy

United States

#20 Jul 7, 2009
and to make it worse, assumptions made after reading the Sentinel
Rocket J Squirrel

Santa Cruz, CA

#22 Jul 7, 2009
Becky Johnson wrote:
FROM THE ARTICLE: "Based on the setup, Yanez suspected the garden was the work of a Mexican drug cartel."
BECKY: Let me get this right. They bust NO ONE. But they tell the public this garden in the middle of nowhere is the work of "MEXICAN" organized crime? That is racist. It's fear-mongering. And its unsupported by any evidence---'based on the setup?" What does THAT mean?
Also, they always tell the number of plants and NEVER the amount of acreage under cultivation. My guess is this garden was less than 3 acres. The Soquel Demonstration forest is about 5 sq. miles.
1 square mile is equal to 640 acres. So that means that this grow took up less than 0.09% of the Soquel Demonstration forest. They say "illegal" pesticides but pesticides are not illegal. Marijuana generally doesn't need pesticides. I do not think that this find justifies the expense, the violation of the privacy of residents, nor represents the presence of Mexican organized crime in our county.
let's look at the on the ground facts, busts of these size where arrests have been made always have Mexican nationals, get off yer butt and set on the back side of 236 and watch clandestine cars of latinos blasting up towards Big basin, go set and watching the revolving groups of latino males waiting behind Johnnies in BC waiting to be picked up. These are not casual day laborers...
A few plants in the back yard, no problem but big cartel operations, i say throw all the resources possible at them including open season hunting tags to the public.
if the cartels leave the impression that remote open lands are no longer safe how long before they openly use road blocks, pick off the population for ransom, target opposition both public and private, buy influence and favor and every other tactic found commonly in latin american. If this is stopped now, it never will be.

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