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

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SHELBY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) -

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

Shelby County Sheriff Willis Blackwell said authorities 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 area from the air.

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

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

"We've had some pretty good size marijuana plant areas but never anything like this," Blackwell said. "There's a pretty sophisticated line of irrigation through here and out of two ponds. They've really been harvesting some good plants out of here."

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

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

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

"It's got to be a pretty good group in here that are living back at some camps that we found. As much as there is back in here and as much as they've found, anybody that we do arrest or prosecute on it would be on a class 1 felony," Blackwell said.

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

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

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