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Professional pot growing operation discovered 2,300 plants seized, no arrests made

by Eric Mullens
HUERFANO — Despite nearly a month of secret surveillance, no arrests have been made in conjunction with a marijuana growing operation discovered in early September in Huerfano County.
Huerfano County Sheriff Bruce Newman said Tuesday that a hunter stumbled upon the grow site, off of Hwy. 12, above Cuchara near Bear Lake/Blue Lake turnoff. Newman said the grow area was about two square city blocks in size and contained an estimated 2,300 plants and was discovered on US Forest Service land.
US Forest Service law enforcement, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, Colorado Parks and Wildlife law enforcement officers and the Huerfano County Sheriff’s Office were involved in seizing the plants on Monday, September 30.
Newman reported that during most of the month of September, one of the federal agencies had in place surveillance cameras at the grow site in an attempt to gather evidence. Witness interviews indicated the presence of various individuals going into the area but Newman said no arrests have been made at this time.
Newman told the Huerfano World Journal, the area had all the earmarks of a professional drug trafficking operation, and utilized sophisticated irrigation piping from a nearby creek.
The marijuana, with an estimated street value of $2.2 million, was destroyed by law enforcement Monday.