Blog dedicated to reporting on Mexican drug cartels
on the border line between the US and Mexico

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Multiple Agencies Seize Almost $250 Million in Illegal Marijuana Linked to DTOs in Fresno County, California

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat

Operation Sentinel in Fresno County Destroyed 32 Tons of Live Plants

During the week of June 7-11th, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Special Investigations Task Force (SITF) wrapped up an ongoing anti-marijuana operation known as “Operation Sentinel.” Narcotics detectives with SITF received assistance from members of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), California Department of Fish and Wildlife, California National Guard, and Cal Cannabis.

Together they executed multiple search warrants, open field eradications, and other marijuana-related investigations. Their work led to the following statistics.
  • 75 locations eradicated
  • 73,738 live marijuana plants destroyed, totaling nearly 32 tons
  • Seizure of close to 3,000 lbs. of processed marijuana packaged for sale
  • 21 jars of concentrated marijuana (honey oil) packaged for sale
  • 37 arrests
  • 10 firearms recovered
  • One stolen car recovered
  • $9,000 in cash seized
The estimated street value of all marijuana seized was just shy of $250 million. Cal Cannabis is in process of assessing fines and penalties to landowners responsible for the illegal commercial marijuana productions. Fines are estimated to total more than $5 million.

The possession of small amounts of marijuana is legal for recreational use in California, however, large, unlicensed marijuana operations remain illegal. Due to these operations being unregulated, they pose dangers to the public and environment. The majority of locations eradicated in Operation Sentinel were run by Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTO) who were attempting to commercially cultivate illegal marijuana for sale. 

These DTOs included Mexican drug cartels, Chinese organized criminal operations, Laotian and Cambodian organized crime groups, and Outlaw Motorcycle Gang interests. These groups not only produce and distribute marijuana illegally but often deal in other substances such as methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, and fentanyl.

Los Angeles County's Largest Drug Bust

This large bust in the Central California valley comes on the heels of Los Angeles County's largest drug bust in its history, as reported by Borderland Beat. Illegal marijuana cultivation in California still thrives due to high taxes and the high cost of lengthy licensing processes in the state. And with minimal consequences, the black market still exists in the legalized state.

Legal Licensing Delays

Recently, California approved a one-time $100 million grant to help California cities and counties streamline cannabis business licensing requested by California Gov. Gavin Newsom to be split among 17 cities and counties that have already issued marijuana business licenses to companies but are struggling to move them from “provisional” permits to “annual” licenses.

Licensing is a major problem in California because more than 80% of the state’s licensed marijuana companies are still operating on temporary provisional licenses and lawmakers have yet to authorize an extension of those licenses beyond 2021.

Subsequently, any company without an annual license is currently in danger of having to close its doors – at least temporarily – when its provisional permit expires in 2022. The $100 million grant is designed to alleviate that issue by speeding up local license processing. At $22 million, Los Angeles is the largest recipient of the funds, the Times reported.

However, California marijuana industry insiders said the funding likely will not be nearly enough to solve the systemic issue it’s intended to address: a months-long bottleneck in getting annual business permits approved. Jerred Kiloh, president of the L.A.-based United Cannabis Business Association, said he’d prefer to see the Newsom administration focus its efforts on reforming the licensing process itself instead of throwing money at the existing problem.

In addition, Kiloh noted, because the $100 million is going only to cities and counties that have already approved legal cannabis programs, the move won’t incentivize local governments that have banned marijuana businesses to change their stance.



  1. Great. Where is Rafael Caro Quintero?!?

    1. He too is hiding in caves of the Forrest, as you know he has a huge bounty on his head dead or alive, like in the wild wild west.

  2. Gov and big pharma want it all. No right to do this. Your permits and licenses are soon to be a thing of the past. Don’t use dispensary’s they are regulated and polluted. LEO’s need to study the “Constitution” for the u nited states. Common law-natural law-Gods law coming soon near you. Personal responsibility is coming back in a big way.

    1. Maybe you should read the constitution as well or get some legal adviser doing this for you

    2. 8:56

      Your a loose goose man

      if you think Personal responsibility is a good thing
      your Wrong
      Dont ya know its not anyones fault anymore
      Your way of thinking was a thing of the past When people actually took Responsibility

      World has changed way too many soft yellow bellied Snowflakes
      now a days .
      where have you been
      is a nine yr pot smoking kid take responsibility for raping or stealing a car crash into inoocents

  3. Mexico is to legalize cannabis.

  4. california is getting picked apart by every kind of criminal there is. future doesn't look too bright for anyone other than criminals and the 1%.

    1. USA bringing it on both itself and Mexico. If USA really didn’t want drugs they would execute and not incarcerate. Fuck the USA and its greedy politicians, government agencies, and selfish users that only think of themselves. Fucking gringos

    2. 11:33 Fu too.

    3. To 1133 your mom will be washing that dirty mouth of yours.

  5. give it to the veterans with PTSD who cannot afford medical cannabis, dont just throw it away.

  6. Not here Loas. Should'uh thought about yours before coming way over here for ours. 250 is just a drop in the bucket for mine. Pinche chino! La stratjia te falta. Vas hay morir de hambre wey! Vas hay ver como se asse porque te vamos hacer aya. Ah cerar tu negocio porque ni firma puedes agarar. En la linia un signature queren los mios. Pura pluma les pongo.

  7. Excellent 👍 catch more criminals spending time incarcerated.. enjoy the TV dinners, cjng has been having a bad month of June. Cheerleaders things will get better.

    1. Cartels that are minding there own business should Ally, to take down the baby Killer Cartel.

  8. It’s about time u guys post shit that happen here, but no 🇺🇸 don’t have any cartels

    1. Mijo chaparro the site mainly caters to cartel crimes transpiring in Mexico, but since cartel crime is reaching the deserts of USA, then it's reported. I will refund you're subscription. Have a great day.

    2. Its less risky for the Mexican Cartels to send people to setup grow ops in California than smuggling it across the border.

  9. The violence from illegal weed in this area is nuts. Lots of murders and disputes happening over this. Most cartel based... they'll find people dead in orchards, dead in canals, dead in cars .. crazy shit mostly over weed

  10. La mota me robaron,,,,

  11. Fresno is like that. You can invent crime descriptions from mad libs and it actually just happened down the block.

    [Noun] [violent act] [ethnicity] [weapon] [drug] [mafia] [nation]


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