On July 11, 2019, deputies with the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Marijuana Enforcement Team (MET) served two search warrants to investigate illegal cannabis cultivation in the Hyampom area of Humboldt County. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the California State Water Resources Control Board , the Humboldt County Environmental Health and Hazmat Unit and the Humboldt County Planning and Building Department assisted in the service of the warrant.
Three parcels were investigated during the service of the warrants. The parcels did not possess the required county permit and state license to cultivate cannabis commercially.
During the service of the warrants, deputies eradicated approximately 2,000 growing cannabis plants. Deputies seized and destroyed over 85 pounds of processed cannabis. Deputies also located and seized one firearm.
Assisting agencies found the following violations:
- Water diversion violation (up to $8,000 fine per day, per violation)
- Water pollution violation (up to $20,000 fine per day, per violation)
- Depositing trash in or near a waterway violation (up to $20,000 fine per day, per violation)
- Improper storage and removal of solid waste violation (up to $25,000 fine per day, per violation)
- Commercial cannabis ordinance violation (up to $10,000 fine per day)
- Grading without a permit violation (up to $10,000 fine per day, per violation)
- Building code violation
- Streamside management violation
- Unapproved sewage violation
- Junk cars violation
- No water right to cultivate cannabis State Water Board violation
- Failure to follow water forbearance State Water Board violation
- No water measuring device for diversion State Water Board violation
Additional violations with civil fines are expected to be filed by the assisting agencies. No arrests were made during the service of these warrants, however numerous suspects have been identified and arrests are anticipated as this investigation continues.
Anyone with information about this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office at (707) 445-7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at (707) 268-2539.