Feds Bust Major Pot Network in Wisconsin National Forest
Single group behind sophisticated farms
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Aug 12, 2010 4:16 AM CDT
This marijuana growing operation was found earlier this year on other public land in the Sequioa National Forest near Fresno, Calif. .   (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – Some 200 federal agents and police swarmed a national forest in northern Wisconsin to bust a massive pot-growing network on public land. The illegal operations involved clear-cutting forests to establish fields, drying barns and shelters so growers could live and process pot on-site, reports the Green Bay Press Gazette. The multiple sites in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest are believed linked to an even broader network of operations on other nearby land, including the Menominee Indian Reservation, and involve thousands of marijuana plants.

Investigators believe a single drug ring operates all the sites, reports AP. The organization wasn't named in court documents, but Mexican drug cartels have been linked in the past to sophisticated operations on other public lands in the US. So far 12 men have been arrested in the raids. Eight appeared yesterday in a Green Bay court with a Spanish translator. The investigation is continuing.