Junction City, Ore. – The Lane County Sheriff’s Office recently received a tip regarding a very large-scale illegal marijuana growing operation west of Junction City.
Lane County Sheriff’s Deputies applied for, and were granted a warrant to search the involved property located in the 26000blk of High Pass Rd.
Given the substantial size of the operation, officials from several area law enforcement agencies assisted with the execution of the search warrant. Authorities executed the warrant just after 7:00am yesterday morning and located approximately 32 separate green houses being used to cultivate marijuana plants at various stages of maturity. In total 8,716 illegal marijuana plants were seized and destroyed.
Several migrant workers, believed to be victims of human trafficking, were located on site and found to be living in deplorable and unsanitary conditions in the adjacent forest. The workers were detained, interviewed, and released after being provided with information regarding local support services available to them.
Julian Marin, 27, was located nearby and determined to be in charge of the operation site. Marin was charged with the Illegal Manufacture of Marijuana and found to have an out of county warrant from an unrelated offense. Evidence indicates that this criminal grow operation was being funded and overseen by an organized criminal organization based in Mexico.
The extent of the environmental impact from this illegal operation remains under investigation. Lane County Code
Compliance officials were present during the execution of the search warrant. They noted the green houses, along with electrical and irrigation systems, were unpermitted and ontained numerous code violations. Code Compliance will be conducting appropriate follow-up and enforcement. The Oregon State Water Master’s Office also responded to the scene and discovered violations related to the unlawful use of water at the site, for which their office will conduct appropriate follow up.
The Lane County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the following agencies for their assistance with the investigation: Springfield Police Department, Eugene Police Department, Douglas Interagency Narcotics Team, Drug Enforcement Administration, and Oregon Department of Forestry.
News Release from Lane Co. Sheriff’s Office
Posted on FlashAlert: August 25th, 2022 1:53 PM