A major marijuana burst has been reported by authorities who revealed that investigators have raided suspected marijuana grow operations involving Chinese nationals in western Washington.
The successful raid resulted in the confiscation of an estimated $80 million or more in marijuana. Reports from the Chronicle revealed that the team of over two dozen agencies led by the Grays Harbor County Drug Task Force began executing 50 search warrants Tuesday in Grays Harbor, Thurston and King Counties before they seized the pot.
A report released by the Grays Harbor Sheriff's Office indicated that the raids resulted in 44 arrests, 26 vehicle confiscations and the seizure of guns and other items.
Reports from the investigators also revealed that they found $400,000 in cash and gold and seized 32,449 marijuana plants. The authorities also revealed that the investigation started after residents reported possibly grows in the Elma, Aberdeen and Hoquiam areas.
A statement released by the sheriff's office indicated that investigators believe Chinese nationals involved in the organized crime were buying homes mostly with cash to set up the marijuana grows. This comes as a surprise to most people, even those living in Washington, that while cannabis is legal throughout the Evergreen State, home cultivation — even on a very small scale — remains illegal.
After Washington citizens voted to legalize the adult-use of recreational marijuana, most believed this would liberate the plant. Majority of them were under the impression that citizens would have more natural freedoms with cannabis — than smoking a joint in a park with your friends would be as legal as growing a couple cannabis plants in your summer garden, but in fact, neither of those are true. Public consumption is a big no-no, and growing houseplants could still warrant some jail time.
Funny enough, Washington is the only legal cannabis state that does not allow personal home cultivation. Every other state that has passed recreational adult-use marijuana laws include the right to home cultivation.