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Man caught with 10,000 marijuana plants to be deported

by Chris Bristol
Yakima Herald-Republic

Why are we spending the money to incarcerate him for 6 months? Send him home now. -UA

 

YAKIMA, Wash. — A 27-year-old caught tending thousands of marijuana plants in a vineyard in the Harrah area is expected to be deported to Mexico after he serves out a six-month jail sentence.

Besitacion Guzman Marcial was sentenced Wednesday in Yakima County Superior Court after earlier pleading guilty to charges of delivery of a controlled substance and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm.

The case stemmed from a raid this summer on a Campbell Road vineyard, where authorities reported destroying nearly 10,000 marijuana plants.

According to charging documents, the operation was discovered during a flyover by law enforcement on Aug. 11.

Drug agents visited the scene in the middle of the night a few days later, then came back the day of Aug. 23 and saw fertilizer and a water hose leading to a nearby home at 5490 Campbell Road.

Guzman was arrested Sept. 1 when authorities made a third visit to the property. He told authorities he was living in the house and was being paid $100 a day by someone named Juan to take care of the marijuana.

Agents said they found an AK-style assault rifle and two shotguns in the residence as well as a .380-caliber semiautomatic pistol in Guzman’s pants pocket.

The Campbell Road raid was one of four large-scale marijuana grows that authorities reported they discovered last summer.

Seven men, all Mexican nationals, were arrested in those cases, which included separate grows in the Oak Creek Wildlife Area and one on state Department of Natural Resource land in the Tampico area.

The total haul of 30,556 plants represented a significantly smaller eradication effort than in recent years, including a total of 80,000 plants in 2009.

Last month, two defendants arrested in connection with one of the Oak Creek grows entered plea deals with federal prosecutors calling for 10-year sentences each.

Sentencing was delayed until February.

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