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A Suspect Arrested At Clone Nursery Operation in Railroad Flat

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Railroad Flat, CA – A raid this week at a property in Railroad Flat turned up more than 34,000 pot plants in the neighborhood of ten million dollars.

Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office, in collaboration with the Yuba County Sheriff’s Office, raided a property in the 1400 block of West Forty Road in Railroad Flat at 8:30 a.m. on Monday, June 3. Sheriff’s officials say they uncovered an extensive, sophisticated indoor and outdoor illegal marijuana clone nursery and cultivation operation. They added, “This location was primarily used to produce young plants intended for distribution to other cultivation sites.”

The office’s Marijuana Enforcement Team (MET) discovered 34,467 marijuana plants, whose estimated street value ranges from $6,893,400 to $10,340,100, according to investigators. A rifle and large-capacity magazines were also found during the search. Several code violations were also found, including unsafe electrical wiring and improper waste disposal, presenting environmental and public health risks.

On the site was 42-year-old Isarael Villalopez of Railroad Flat, who was arrested on multiple charges related to the illegal operation, including illegal cultivation of marijuana, maintaining a place for drug use, possession of an assault weapon, and possession of large-capacity magazines.

Agencies supporting the operation include the National Guard, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and Fish and Game. The case is still under investigation.

“This operation emphasizes the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office’s ongoing efforts to combat illegal marijuana cultivation and the associated dangers,” relayed sheriff’s officials. “Residents are encouraged to report any suspicious activities to the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office tip line at 209-754-6030.”

  • Illegal pot plants found in Railroad Flat raid -- CCSO photo
  • Mold growing on the wall of an illegal pot grow in Railroad Flat -- CCSO photo
  • Illegal pot plants found in Railroad Flat raid -- CCSO photo
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