HELENDALE:(VVNG.com)- The marijuana enforcement team seizes 5,557 marijuana plants along with 171lbs of processed marijuana and firearms in multiple unincorporated areas of San Bernardino County over a two day period, between Wednesday, August 20, 2014 and Thursday, August 21, 2014.
According to a press release, members of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Marijuana Enforcement Team conducted investigations resulting in the service of 9 search warrants at residential properties in various unincorporated areas of San Bernardino County, to include the communities of Joshua Tree, Landers, Bloomington and Helendale. The locations were found to have large-scale outdoor marijuana cultivations. The marijuana plants were growing in unsecured fenced in areas, commonly referred to as “Plywood Grows.” The investigations revealed all of the marijuana cultivation operations were illegal and not in compliance with California medical marijuana laws.
The investigations resulted in total seizures of 5,557 marijuana plants, 171.5 pounds of processed marijuana, 4 firearms (2 sawed off shotguns, 1 with serial number removed) and a large quantity of Hydrocodone pills and the arrest of 14 suspects. The large amount of marijuana seized at the individual locations suggests the suspects had no intention of abiding by the states medical marijuana laws and were strictly for-profit operations. Many of the suspects were utilizing fictitious medical marijuana recommendations in an effort to deceive law enforcement personnel into thinking the operations were legitimate.
The County of San Bernardino has an ordinance prohibiting outdoor marijuana cultivations. San Bernardino County Code Enforcement personnel assisted with the cultivation investigations for administrative enforcement of County Code violations. The Sheriff’s Narcotics Division will continue to enforce California marijuana laws as well as the San Bernardino County Ordinances regarding marijuana cultivation and distribution. Persons found to be violating state marijuana laws and county ordinances or utilizing medical marijuana recommendations under false pretenses are subject to fines, prosecution and seizure of property.
Anyone with information regarding the above investigations or other illegal cultivation locations is urged to contact the Sheriff’s Narcotics Division at (909)890-4840. Callers wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call the We-tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip Hotline at www.wetip.com.
SUSPECTS: Carlos Gonzales-41 (Los Angeles), Angie Colindrez-19 (Los Angeles), Manuel Perez-48 (Los Angeles), Andres Marquez-39 (Los Angeles), Jose Rascon-60 (Bloomington), Thonekeo Sounannavong-55 (Fresno), Alex Aphayboun-46 (Sacramento), Xayadeth Kayavong-38 (Fresno), Athith Kayavong-35 (Fresno), Phouthone Khaithianthong-52 (Porterville), Lee Callan-58 (Landers), Aquilino Villasenor-50 (Mexico), Roberto Zavala-44 (Bakersfield), Manuel Madrigal-Castillo-21 (Mexico)
Search warrants served August 20, 2014:
-67000 Block of Daisy Lane, Joshua Tree
779 marijuana plants and 2 lbs of processed marijuana seized
Carlos Gonzales, Angie Colindrez, Manuel Perez and Andres Marquez arrested
-18000 Block of 8th Street, Bloomington (related to 67015 Daisy Lane, Joshua Tree)
40 marijuana plants seized
Jose Rascon arrested
-500 Block of Lambert Road, Landers
95 marijuana plants seized
Thonekeo Sounannavong arrested
-100 Block of Bowman Trail, Landers
403 marijuana plants seized
Alex Aphayboun arrested
-1000 Block of Yucca Mesa Road, Landers
1,579 marijuana plants seized
Xayadeth Kayavong and Athith Kayavong arrested
-59000 Block of Reche Road, Landers
566 marijuana plants seized
Phouthone Khaithianthong arrested
-5700 Block of Linn Road, Landers
30 marijuana plants, 34 lbs of processed marijuana and 73 Hydrocodone pills seized
Lee Callan arrested
Search warrants served August 21, 2014:
-Undeveloped parcel on Wild Road, Helendale
761 marijuana plants, 15.5 lbs of processed marijuana, 1 45cal handgun and 1 sawed off shotgun with serial number removed seized
Aquilino Villasenor, Roberto Zavala and Manuel Madrigal-Castillo arrested
-29000 Block of Wild Road, Helendale
1,304 marijuana plants, 120 lbs processed marijuana and 1 sawed off shotgun seized
No suspects located