August 15 - Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office Special Operations Marijuana Eradication Team seized 9,600 Marijuana plants at Mt. Madonna County Park in Gilroy.
Deputies had originally anticipated destroying four marijuana gardens located three miles deep in the Mt. Madonna County Park. However, as they cleared the first four, they discovered five more gardens in nearby areas. The nine gardens yielded a total of 9,600 plants. Once matured, these plants would have had a street value of approximately $40 million dollars. Two of the gardens had tents and other signs that the growers were actually living on site. No arrests were made during the raid.
“The message we’re sending is clear.” stated Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Deputy Palanov, “If you illegally grow marijuana in Santa Clara County, we will find it and destroy it.”
So far this year, the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office Marijuana Suppression Team has seized and destroyed over 80,000 Marijuana plants. The total street value of these plants is in excess of $320 million. In addition to the Marijuana, three suspects have been arrested in raids this year.
The Marijuana Suppression Team is part of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office Special Operations Unit and consists of two full time deputies and one sergeant. The California Governor's Office of Emergency Services funds most of the program. The mission of the program is to minimize marijuana availability through investigations, crop destructions, arrests, prosecutions of cultivators and traffickers, to deter cultivation and potential growing areas and to seize and initiate forfeiture of perpetrator's assets.
Anyone having any information related to illegal indoor and/or outdoor marijuana gardens can call the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office Marijuana Eradication Team Tip line at (408) 808-4420.