SEVERE WX : Wind Advisory - High Wind Warning - Flash Flood Watch - Flood Watch View Alerts

Investigators find and destroy more than 50K marijuana plants at sites near Bonanza

The Basin Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team (BINET) searched a large grow operation along Philpott Lane on Tuesday.

Posted: Sep 16, 2021 11:04 AM
Updated: Sep 16, 2021 11:33 AM

BONANZA, Ore. — Investigators in Klamath County raided a large marijuana grow operation near Bonanza on Tuesday, reportedly finding and destroying more than 50,000 plants.

According to Klamath Falls Police, the Basin Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team (BINET) obtained a search warrant for the "enormous" operation along Philpott Lane in Bonanza. Officers from multiple agencies swarmed the property, which was purported to be growing hemp.

The site was not licensed or permitted to grow either hemp or marijuana, and KFPD said that on-site testing confirmed that the plants were actually high-THC marijuana. Investigators were also looking into potential unlawful use of groundwater to maintain the grow.

Grow sites on the property covered more than 300 acres, consisting of 132 large greenhouses full of mature marijuana plants. KFPD said that the operation had a newly completed and uninspected well, which the agency surmised was used to pump thousands of gallons of water each day in order to water the plants.

After collecting evidence at the site, investigators brought in Klamath County Solid Waste Management to bulldoze the roughly 51,480 plants and greenhouses. Investigators also seized a large amount of cash "as suspected drug proceeds."

Criminal charges for several people were referred to the Klamath County District Attorney's Office for review.

"Klamath County has an increasing problem with large scale illegal marijuana grows," KFPD said. "The illegal marijuana grow-related increase in water theft and illegal use of groundwater during these extreme drought years continues to be a community concern."

The problem is far from limited to Klamath County. Law enforcement officials in Josephine, Jackson, and Siskiyou counties have increasingly tried to crack down on unlicensed marijuana grows. While the frequency of raids has increased this year, officials continue to say that they do not have the personnel to deal with the full extent of the problem.

Earlier in September, law enforcement agencies in Klamath County raided another series of "hemp" grows, destroying roughly 11,000 plants in the first and 22,000 plants in the second.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 356061

Reported Deaths: 4275
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah55695704
Washington38673322
Marion36719454
Clackamas29660309
Lane27624302
Jackson22982310
Deschutes20211125
Umatilla14451150
Linn12780130
Douglas12065243
Josephine9349196
Yamhill8674113
Klamath7965118
Polk733681
Malheur561776
Benton546531
Coos501294
Columbia379744
Jefferson372352
Union318449
Lincoln318039
Crook287546
Wasco287441
Clatsop243329
Baker202529
Tillamook196432
Hood River192137
Morrow184423
Curry180025
Harney113726
Grant100013
Lake92412
Wallowa68612
Gilliam1544
Sherman1503
Wheeler1121
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4842472

Reported Deaths: 71202
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles148181426506
Riverside3712935030
San Diego3660564183
San Bernardino3582135663
Orange3241845550
Sacramento1593332308
Kern1459621644
Fresno1458772084
Santa Clara1453911896
Alameda1205301400
San Joaquin1025821721
Ventura1009841166
Contra Costa998841008
Stanislaus860701331
Tulare80203967
San Francisco54375646
San Mateo54112622
Monterey50885587
Solano46021341
Santa Barbara45160523
Merced42299581
Sonoma40925402
Placer39342425
Imperial35999766
Kings32801322
San Luis Obispo29945332
Madera23876285
Shasta23851352
Butte23738270
Santa Cruz21018220
Yolo20353248
Marin17692244
El Dorado17169149
Sutter13913175
Napa12882100
Yuba1008582
Tehama9510110
Humboldt9243108
Nevada914290
Mendocino763687
Lassen754347
San Benito744472
Tuolumne688089
Lake6605104
Amador544064
Siskiyou450546
Glenn436733
Calaveras389381
Del Norte358342
Colusa307218
Inyo211140
Mono16703
Plumas16417
Mariposa133416
Trinity87711
Modoc6865
Sierra1880
Unassigned1820
Alpine1030
Out of CA00
Medford
Cloudy
57° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 57°
Brookings
Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 54° Lo: 49°
Feels Like: 53°
Crater Lake
Cloudy
57° wxIcon
Hi: 33° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 57°
Grants Pass
Cloudy
57° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 57°
Klamath Falls
Cloudy
50° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 50°
Showers and cool Friday
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events