View Full Version : Drug Agents Can't Keep Up With Pot Growers

10-13-2005, 11:03 AM
State narcotics officers from CAMP - Campaign Against Marijuana Planting - are searching for "gardens" to eradicate and find six on a warm, cloudless day.

They strap onto a 150-foot cable dangling from the chopper, drop into the pot patches, hack down the plants and bundle them for the chopper to haul back to a landing zone.

Perhaps $500,000 worth of America's favorite illegal drug is trucked off for burial. It's not a big day by CAMP standards: 813 plants that fill a pickup bed. In this ever-growing illicit market, agents routinely find plots of 5,000 and 10,000 plants that require dump trucks to dispose of.

In the 2005 growing season, CAMP says it so far has destroyed more plants than ever - 1.1 million worth $4.5 billion on the street, up from 621,000 plants last year. But agents still lost ground to growers. No longer is marijuana cultivation the cottage industry that flourished in the 1960s and '70s after waves of counterculture migrants bought cheap land in the northern California mountains and grew pot for their own use and extra income.