Medical marijuana plants in violation of county ordinance seized
OROVILLE, Calif. - Butte County removed marijuana plants being grown in violation to the county's local cultivation ordinance in Oroville, Tuesday.
A warrant to remove the marijuana plants that were in violation of Measure A was executed on Bangor Park Road by Butte County Code Enforcement Division and the Butte County Sheriff's Office Special Enforcement Unit.
The operation resulted in the seizure of 491 marijuana plants, weighing 3,220 pounds, with a street value of more than $750,000. The search warrant turned up a fully automatic AK-47 and three individuals from Los Angeles and Riverside County was arrested for possession of a machinegun, possession of an assault weapon and possession of a firearm with the serial number removed or altered.
The property had two RVs, three manufactured homes and several tents which were all permitted. Inside the units were are being used to process marijuana and sleeping quarters with personal belongings.
The marijuana being grown on the property appeared to be in compliance with Proposition 215, under contract with a collective in southern California, however, an administrative hearing officer determined no marijuana could be cultivated because there is no legal residence on the property.
As a result of the hearing officer's decision, the property owner was given 10 days to bring the property into compliance, and when he failed to do so, the County obtained an abatement warrant and abated the nuisance.
Butte County's local cultivation ordinance generally allows up to 150 square feet of medical marijuana to be grown by patients or caregivers as long as land use requirements are met that addresses public health and safety.
"We often see multiple issues with large cultivation sites like this one," said, Tim Snellings, Development Services Director. "We see unsafe, unsanitary living conditions for workers, criminal activity, and damage to the environment."