Trinity Cannabis Raids Expose Hundreds of Environmental Crimes

Scientists with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) have documented more than 150 environmental violations stemming from a cannabis enforcement operation in Trinity County last month.

The operation was carried out by CDFW, the Trinity County Sheriff’s Office, and the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the California National Guard, the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office, and the State Water Resources Control Board during the week of June 26. A total of 34 search warrants were served in the Mad River, Kettenpom and Zenia areas, according to a press release.

Officers destroyed 84,150 illegal cannabis plants, over 5,419 pounds of illegally processed cannabis, and a honey oil extraction lab. They also seized six firearms.

None of the operators had cannabis cultivation licenses. Their crimes include illegal water diversion, large-scale illegal grading, sediment discharge to streams, introduction of petroleum products and trash into watersheds, and the use of dangerous rodenticides and pesticides. According to CDFW, many of the violations were directly impacting national forest land.

“The numerous environmental crimes associated with these operations is staggering but not surprising,” said said CDFW Deputy Director and Chief of the Law Enforcement Division David Bess. “Illegal operators of this nature are a detriment to our native fish and wildlife and those legally cultivating cannabis.”