"Broccoli, Luckoli."

2007
Feb
8

broccolijan10.jpgYou know, broccoli is officially the #3 agricultural product in San Luis Obispo County, behind wine grapes (#1) and cattle (#2), and I live within shouting distance of some of both the top two (but it’s not a good idea to shout at cattle, and shouting at grapes is just silly). If I knew where the broccoli was, I’d go and shout there. HOWEVER, after this news story of a couple weeks ago, I think these standings may need to be adjusted.

But still I had to get this T-shirt:
macho_newspost_450px.png

(if the news story above has been de-webbed, you can see it in here:)

Authorities bust nationwide drug ring
Sally Connell
sconnell@thetribunenews.com

Law enforcement officials illustrated an estimated 118 pounds of compressed marijuana at the San Luis Obispo Police Department Wednesday morning seized Jan. 5 after a 15-month nationwide investigation.

That amount seized on the Central Coast adds to the 631 pounds of marijuana collected in a San Luis Obispo shipping warehouse in November 2005 by the San Luis Obispo County Narcotics Task Force. That incident prompted the multi-state investigation.

In all, the California street value of the roughly 750 pounds of marijuana was estimated at approximately $300,000. But its destination was Cincinnati, Ohio, where its street value would be closer to $750,000, according to officials.

Also shown to the press was a large sealing machine, industrial grade cellophane, three guns, a bulletproof vest and other items seized in the long effort to deal with a marijuana dealing ring, which officials say had tentacles across the country.

The San Luis Obispo County Narcotics Task Force, under the auspices of the California Department of Justice and including officers from most of the county?s police agencies, led the investigation starting in November 2005.

That was when a Sheriff?s department canine named Jake, who is trained to alert on five drugs, alerted on boxes in a San Luis Obispo shipping warehouse.

“Based on the dog’s alert, we had probable cause to obtain a search warrant,” said one of the task force members, an Arroyo Grande officer. The task force members who attended the special press conference Wednesday morning insisted on anonymity to protect their investigations and themselves.

The NTF then found 631 pounds of densely packed marijuana in boxes which were clearly labeled “Computer Monitor” or “Special 27 Television” inside the warehouse. They were headed to Cincinnati, Ohio.

As the investigation proceeded, the source of the marijuana was found to be Mexico, which brought the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement brand of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security into the investigation.

Officer Matt Blackstone, formerly an NTF member but now back with the San Luis Obispo police, said officials are not identifying the shipping facility because they believe the business was innocent of any involvement.

What transpired between November 2005 and Jan. 5, 2007 was a multi-state surveillance program which resulted in the identification five suspects on suspicion of conspiracy to distribute, possessions for sale and transportation of marijuana.

While none of the suspects are residents of San Luis Obispo, all have been in the city at some time, officials said.

In fact, the NTF believes that there were four to five shipments of marijuana made by the same network out of San Luis Obispo before the ring was detected in November 2005, according to NTF Commander Jim Rodriguez. Those shipments were reportedly made to Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina and New Jersey, Rodriguez said.

1 Comment (so far) about

"Broccoli, Luckoli."

  1. M.B. Says:

    I’m a bit concerned about this “marijuana dealing ring, which officials say had tentacles across the country.” that is refered to in the article.

    How big is this ring with tentacles? Why isn’t a giant ring with tentacles a story on it’s own? Do I have to be scared to leave my house at night?

    Inquiring minds want to know!

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