Navajo Nation: Tremendous amount of marijuana seized in large scale, multi-agency drug bust


NAVAJO NATION (ABC4 News) – Multiple agencies took down a large-scale marijuana operation in Shiprock, on the Navajo Nation, resulting in thousands of pounds of the drug being confiscated.

According to a post by the Navajo Police Department, Federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies teamed together in the Shiprock, New Mexico, area to conduct a “marijuana eradication operation” that yielded tremendous results.

During the two-day operation from Nov. 9 to Nov. 11, hundreds of officers participated in the operation which included 21 farms and two residences on the Navajo Nation near Shiprock.

The marijuana found was housed in 1,107 grow houses, and police say dozens more were under construction.

Agents confiscated 260,000 live plants, an estimated 60,000 pounds of marijuana. They additionally found 19 trash bags filled with fully processed marijuana, 1,000 pounds in baggies, ready for distribution, hidden under a tarp in a grow house.

“First and foremost, I want to congratulate all the agencies involved in this operation, and especially those agents on the scene,” said John C. Anderson, U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico. “The numbers are astounding, and that could not have been achieved without a high level of interagency cooperation and coordination. I am consistently impressed by the professionalism displayed by law enforcement agents in the District of New Mexico. What they accomplished over the past week is remarkable. We are proud to stand with the Navajo Nation in upholding and enforcing tribal and federal law.”

Special Agent in Charge of the Albuquerque FBI Division said he is not sure what is more amazing: the amount of high-grade marijuana we kept off America’s streets, or all the federal, state, local, and tribal agencies who tirelessly worked together to overcome numerous challenges and get the job done.

“One thing I know for certain: We made a huge difference not only on the Navajo Nation, but in countless other communities. The FBI is extremely proud to have been a part of this significant operation and thanks the many partners who contributed to its success.”

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez states the top priority is the safety and well-being of their Navajo citizens and law enforcement officers.

“We appreciate everyone’s patience throughout this process as the Navajo Nation, federal, state, and counties worked together,” said Nez. “It took a lot of time, coordination, and resources to execute this operation over the last few days. On behalf of the Navajo Nation, I thank the Navajo Police Department, Department of Justice, FBI, U.S. Attorneys, and many others who dedicated their time to help our communities eradicate these illegal activities.”

A street value of the drugs seized by agents was not provided.

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