State Attorney General Jerry Brown says Mexican drug cartels are planting the massive pot farms in places like Yosemite National Park or forest service land.
“This is not a few guys growing a few plants. This is massive criminal syndicates raping the lands of California.”
He says they use pesticides and redirect streams – hurting the environment. And they’re armed – often with AK 47’s, says U.S. Attorney McGregor Scott. He says they’re worried about backpackers running into a pot-growing operation:
“Unfortunately I think we may end up with a lethal encounter between a recreator – someone who’s out hiking, taking advantage of Yosemite national park and an armed drug dealer.”
A marijuana advocacy group criticizes the crackdown – saying it drives growers to use suburban pot houses instead.