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September 22, 2021

Enforcement efforts continue against unlicensed cannabis cultivators in Monterey County

MONTEREY COUNTY — Monterey County District Attorney’s Office’s Bureau of Investigations, in cooperation with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and other state and local agencies, continued enforcement efforts in July against the unlicensed cannabis industry.

Last week the Monterey County Cannabis Enforcement Unit conducted cannabis enforcement operations targeting unlicensed cannabis cultivations in the area, resulting in the eradication and destruction of more than three tons of illegal cannabis.

On July 13, similar operations resulted in the eradication and destruction of more than 7,000 pounds of illegal cannabis plants and nearly 300 pounds of processed illegal cannabis on Chualar Canyon Road.

Monterey County Sheriff’s Office reported that its detectives found an illegal honey butane lab at the Chualar location, which required the response of the bomb squad due to the pressurized tanks.

“These enforcement efforts will continue throughout the year,” the DA’s Office stated in a July 22 news release. “Investigation into these most recent illegal operations is active and ongoing.”

Monterey County Cannabis Enforcement Unit has participated in multiple joint operations this year targeting illegal cannabis cultivators, processors, distributors and laboratories. Enforcement efforts are designed to eliminate hazardous and dangerous cannabis products from the market, foster a fair and competitive industry for licensed cannabis businesses and protect the environment of Monterey County.

“Illegal cannabis cultivation sites are extremely harmful to Monterey County’s sensitive ecosystems,” the DA’s Office stated. “Illegal cultivators often divert streams, pollute waterways, kill wildlife and leave waste. In California, cultivating cannabis in a manner that significantly harms the environment is a felony.”

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