Shelby Co. authorities dispose of approximately 12K marijuana pl - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Shelby Co. authorities dispose of approximately 12K marijuana plants at 100-acre pot farm

SHELBY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) -

Shelby County authorities have already disposed of thousandsof marijuana plants in the wake of the discovery of a 100-acre pot farm nearCounty Road 4065 Monday.

Shelby County Sheriff Willis Blackwell saidauthorities disposed of 10,000 to 12,000 marijuana plants Tuesday. In addition,a Texas Department of Public Safety helicopter will be back to survey the areafrom the air.

According to a previous East Texas story, theinvestigation started after the Shelby County Sheriff's Office received a tip. ADPS helicopter flew over the area and confirmed the report. Willis saidauthorities cut down approximately $1 million worth of marijuana plants.

Chief Deputy Chad Sparks said the 100-acre marijuanafield could be the largest pot bust in Shelby County history. Some of the plantswere up to 12 feet tall.

"We've had some pretty good size marijuana plant areas but neveranything like this," Blackwell said. "There's a pretty sophisticatedline of irrigation through here and out of two ponds. They've really beenharvesting some good plants out of here."

The plants were bundled in a quantity of 25 so that the Sheriff's Officecould keep up with the total amount.

Blackwell said the land owner told investigators he did not know anythingabout the operation. "He was going to have this place cleared andreplanted in pine."

Blackwell said more than one person has to be responsible for all of themarijuana found.

"It's got to be a pretty good group in here that are living back atsome camps that we found. As much as there is back in here and as much asthey've found, anybody that we do arrest or prosecute on it would be on a class1 felony," Blackwell said.

The Sheriff's Office will continue with this investigation in hopes offinding every plant and all parties involved.

As of Monday afternoon, authorities had filled up two trailers and two dumptrucks with the plants and plan to burn them overnight.

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