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PIRU | VENTURA COUNTY FOCUS

Authorities Destroy 981 Marijuana Plants

September 11, 1996|NICK GREEN

Authorities Tuesday destroyed nearly 1,000 marijuana plants growing in the hills south of Piru that were discovered by a rancher checking on his cattle.

The 981 plants ranged in height from 6 to 10 feet, said Sgt. Arnie Aviles of the Ventura County Sheriff's Department. At maturity, the plants would have had an estimated street value of $3.9 million, he said.

Narcotics officers from the Sheriff's Department and the Oxnard and Ventura police departments found a gravity-flow irrigation system near a stream and a makeshift camp along with a handgun at the Eureka Canyon site.

No arrests were made. The plants had not been watered in several days, leading authorities to believe the suspects might have become frightened and abandoned the operation recently.

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