[UPDATE: No Permits Filed, Says HCSO] Loleta Orchid Farm Raided
The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has confirmed that yesterday a search warrant was served in the 2100 block of Table Bluff Road in the Loleta area. Other sources have told us that the actual property was a former orchid farm that was sold last October for $700,000, according to Zillow.
The property was reported for cultivating narcotics earlier this month and investigated by the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office. Marijuana was reportedly seen in the greenhouses, according to non-official sources.
The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office would not confirm whether the arrest yesterday at 12:45 p.m. for marijuana cultivation of a Matthew Wayne Weston was related.
UPDATE 2:28 p.m.: Press release from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office:
On Wednesday, June 22, 2016, at 7:30 a.m. Members of the Humboldt County Drug Enforcement Unit, and County Code Enforcement served a search warrant on a residence in the 2100 block of Table Bluff Road, Loleta, CA.
Upon Service of the Search Warrant, eight subjects were detained; [two of which were responsible for the property]*, 33 year old Matthew Wayne Weston and 35 year old Jennifer Overson Weston. It was determined Matthew Weston and Jennifer Weston were responsible for the commercial marijuana operation on the property. The other subjects detained were interviewed by the Deputies and later released from the scene. Matthew Weston could not provide documentation to Law Enforcement that the Commercial Marijuana Growing Operation was in compliance with the State Medical Marijuana Laws or the County Medical Marijuana Ordinance. The property was subsequently searched and a large commercial marijuana growing operation was discovered inside several greenhouses. The greenhouses contained a total of 3,289 growing marijuana plants ranging from 3’ to 6’ in height. Deputies also located 889.3 lbs of processed marijuana. A total of $9,924 in US currency was confiscated at the residence and it was seized for possible asset forfeiture. County Code Enforcement inspected the property and located several hazards that included illegal wiring on site.
Matthew Weston was arrested for marijuana cultivation, possession of marijuana for sales, and conspiracy to commit a crime. Jennifer Weston was issued a citation and released on scene. Matthew Weston was transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked for the above listed charges. His bail was set at $75,000.
Deputies served an additional search warrant on a storage unit, located in the 1000 block of Airport Road, Fortuna, CA. In the storage unit deputies located three illegal assault rifles: #1 was a .223caliber AR15 Rifle and had two thirty-round magazines, #2 was a .223caliber AR15 Rifle with an 8” barrel, #3 was a 9MM semi-automatic Rifle with an attached 100-round drum magazine and removable stock. It should be noted that the County Planning Division did not have records on file for this property being registered, nor had Matthew Weston submitted an application to be in compliance with the County Commercial Medical Marijuana Land Use Ordinance.
Anyone with information for the Sheriff’s Office regarding this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Sheriff’s Office at 707-445-7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at 707-268-2539.
*UPDATED to reflect a change sent out by the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office.