[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.

Orchid Farm Matthew Weston

Orchid Farm

Orchid Farm

Orchid Farm

Drying marijuana

Orchid Farm indoor

Indoor

Orchid Farm

Marijuana in greenhouse

Orchid Farm

Tubs of marijuana

201603005 Weston, Matthew_280x420_thumb

Weston

*UPDATED to reflect a change sent out by the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office.

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55 comments

  • i guess the term “discrete” doesn’t come into play anymore…

  • I heard the DEA was involved, that is probably why there is little information being released. Out of state trafficking maybe? Those are really nice greenhouses.

  • Sleepy Alligator

    Growing certain orchids could potentially be as profitable, if not more, as growing weed. Real vanilla beans are one of the most expensive spices out there.

  • veterans friend

    Flowers is flowers baby

  • Kym, there is a question which is important this year about Humboldt raids. “Has the grower filed to get a county “license” for the marijuana? ” I have been told, in part by Sheriff Downey, and in part by the Planning Department, that people who are “in the permitting process” would not be raided, allowing the Sheriff to use his resources on the many growers who are not yet applying for county permission to grow. The first step is filing a Notification of Cannabis Activity with the Planning Department. It is simple to do, and free. Getting the permit is neither, but just filing the intitial form puts the grown “in the permitting process” apparently. To aid the Sheriff, people who file the Notification of Cannabis Activity with the Planning Department will have their parcel numbers given to the Sheriff so he can avoid getting warrants and sending raiders to them. This plan maximizes the effectiveness of the Sheriff, and the incentives for existing growers to become legal. Any hint that registered properties are being raided would tend to shut down the entire scheme for legalizing the medical cannabis industry in Humboldt. So, if you get the chance, please ask about the permitting status of the person raided.

    • Hey Ed I was wondering if you could comment on what the limit per medical patient is in Humboldt county. A tenant of mine told me it was 25. I had believed that it was still 12 immature and 6 mature plants. I’m trying to work with him because he is a legit patient but I also want him to keep legal.

      • medical patients do not have a plant number limit in Humboldt county

        25 is a Mendo thing

      • Last I heard was Humboldt decides it by how much area you take up with your plants. 10×10 feet per script I think but you can call a local 215 Dr to find out.

    • The update that came from the Sheriff’s Office states that there was no paperwork.

    • Hello Ed – Thanks for sharing information with folks. Reputable sources of information are dearly needed.

      To be clear, I believe that you referring to the Humboldt County form titled “Commercial Cannabis Activity Registration Form.” Correct?

      It can be downloaded from here: http://ca-humboldtcounty.civicplus.com/DocumentCenter/View/53099

      • This is the big question. I too thought the filing of Commercial Cannabis activity Registration form put you in the ” in process” file. My last two discussions with local attorneys say that is not true. The Sheriff does not consider you “in process” until you file full application. They are not referring to NOI statements with State water, fish and wildlife permits, business formation etc. The Sheriff and District Attorney only consider a filed application to be acceptable. It would be extremely helpful for them to publicly clarify this position. Many people have 80% of the work done yet haven’t filed because they want it perfect. The planning Department will take applications that are incomplete and let you work on the loose ends while filing you as in process. My feeling is Steve Lazaar might not want this, but that is the Sheriffs position.

  • if the google maps thing is showing the exact property it looks like a really nice piece.

  • “cultivating narcotics”?
    1977 called, they want their anti-drug hype back.

  • Good! So another guy who already has a bunch of money comes in from Utah w/ a plan to take advantage of our open-arm policy and blow up a bunch of greenhouses? Let me guess- his plan was to pull off huge crops for the market back in Utah, bring in more people from there to work the scene here and make a couple million $$ while throwing out a few local peanuts? I’m glad to see him get popped and wish we had more busts like this. No, I don’t wish him jail time but c’mon! We are treated like a 3rd world country by opportunists from all over the country. Hope the feds look into his connects back in Utah- it should be an easy trail to follow.

    • I agree how about those Bulgarians on old Briceland rd .They are pumping non stop out of redwood creek . Lets see some of these people destroying the place get busted WTF

      • Um,…Old Briceland Road is not on Redwood Creek ( except where it begins at the bridge in the town ). On a feeder of R.C but not the creek itself.

        • Uh Properties go through from old bricland to redwood creek So you don’t know what your talking about .Fact

          • How about that green house on the eel river in Philipsville Literately on the river bank WTF

          • Only the Marshall Ranch goes thru from Old Briceland to Redwood Creek. the other properties go from Old B Rd. to Honeydew Creek, but not Redwood Creek, only the Marshall Ranch has that luxury.

    • Don’t need to look too far! Look across the street. (Flyers)

  • He was not in Compliance……according to the Sheriff….

    • veterans friend

      [edit]The charges are not heinous crimes. “Failure to yieldat an intersection”, failure to display dealer plates”. Those are CAR DEALER not drug dealer. [edit] JMO

      • There where two controlled substance charges as well, and posting relevant info on someone who was arrested is extremely common and here. At least he wasn’t calling a stranger names.

      • sharpen your pencil

        [eidt] he was arrested for using his pet as a weapon and multiple drug offenses. Hardly only breaking traffic laws. This is just another scumbag from out of state coming here to rape our land and take advantage of relaxed laws by grossly over doing it…. This pile of garbage should be held accountable!

  • compliance means only to register with the county for this summer

  • just saying unless the “three illegal assault rifles” were setup to run full-auto, they are technically NOT ‘assault rifles’ regardless of what the media says. (like the gun used in the orlanda shooting, the media hailed it as both an Ar15 AND an ‘assault rifle’ and technically both of those things were NOT true in the orlando case) Furthermore maybe the ones confiscated were full auto capable, but if they are not then ‘assault rifle’ is not the correct term.

    • The short one is not even a rifle, it’s a pistol. A pistol which is perfectly legal here with the proper components and paperwork.

  • That’s a nice place to.shame.are the guns reg.to them as well?

  • Nice craftsmanship on the greenhouses buddy. Gleaned some great ideas.

  • This place was a former orchid farm built and run by a retired a Eureka docter who passed away a couple of years ago. That was his house and greenhouses for his former successful orchid business. It is indeed a beautiful piece of property.

  • Sigh! ! Mormons.

  • Prime example criminals don’t follow the law your gun laws only have the effect of taking guns from law-abiding citizens our congressman is very wrong for his actions and his allowance for the for the black market to grow into what it is here…

    • Laws deter crimes, to say otherwise is laughable.

      • Yes , to the law abiding. But the law abiding do no wrong, if they do, they pay it back. Now the criminal does not obey laws, so why would he obey this law.
        Is this law ” Special ” Do criminals fear this law more than law against drug dealing ? To want a law passed to destroy guns , is just giving our weapons over to the criminals, and then to sit back and wait for a police man to show up before some nut job kills me and my family.

  • Should be “failure to stay in Utah” GUILTY.

  • BUSTED! Greedy growers. Can’t wait to see growers who get their paperwork straight turning in their neighbors. There’s no code of honor amongst growers.

  • Wow, darn criminals in those Loleta hills, sure glad they shut down an operation that was actually paying property taxes up there … ooohh hmmm

  • 889 LBS? that property paid for itself in less then a year… Or it would have if the owners didn’t get busted. Glad to see greed not paying off for once.

  • Don’t Shit where you sleep, Jonh!!
    I would think you would of figured this out by now little Tomo Sushi boy.
    Don’t store the Lbs at the grow…and who the hell has a paper trail to their storage unit… You think you’re so OG. Keep taking that HGH!

  • They also lost about 180,000 on paying trimmers too.so bad day all around.greed will get you.i hope the new owners keep growing orchid’s.

    • The new owners are growing the dope. The previous owners grew orchids and fast growing redwoods. The husband, a retired doctor, passed away. They were not responsible for the marijuana grow.

  • A $700,000 property. Wow, some people live in a completely different world than I do. I really can’t imagine what it would be like to live there and grow orchids for a living. Doesn’t seem real.

  • The Dr who owned the property has not even been dead for a year. He grew orchids and built the greenhouses for that purpose. The buyers are t from Utah, they are from LA and live across the road. Fact. Greed and posers living right under ur noses looking like pillars of ur community manipulating people in “power” etc etc all the while pumping money out to larger fish , and themselves ( if you don’t believe it Google property). Retired teacher at 40-City slickers thinking they are smarter than all of you. Anyone thinking this loser from Utah is the money behind here ur as stupid as city slicker thinks u r .

  • This is a travesty. The former owners, very well respected doctor and his wife, built their dream home at their favorite location when he retired to grow orchids. They shipped orchids all over the world. He also grew fast growing redwoods to plant when the lumber companies clear cut. When he passed away, THE NEXT DAY, the neighbors who live across the street asked to buy the property for CASH. The widow would not agree to that. Who has that much money in CASH especially “retired teachers” in their 40’s from Los Angeles. These people vacation with high ranking law enforcement officials in the community. Rub elbows with elected officials within the community, to include the coastal commission. It just makes me sick. I have many wonderful memories growing up and visiting the former owners. To see their dream home like this in pictures is difficult. The doctor passed away on July 24, 2015. The property was sold in October 2015.

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