Oklahoma Narcotics Bureau Raids Marijuana Farm Linked to Fake Amazon Van

Oklahoma cracks down on illegal marijuana farms, seizing over 9,000 plants and 215 lbs of processed weed. Authorities link the Bright Stones LLC farm to a larger criminal network, highlighting the state's efforts to address surging illegal grow operations.

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Oklahoma Narcotics Bureau Raids Marijuana Farm Linked to Fake Amazon Van

Oklahoma Narcotics Bureau Raids Marijuana Farm Linked to Fake Amazon Van

The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics (OBN) conducted a raid on Bright Stones LLC, a marijuana farm in Lindsey, Oklahoma, seizing over 9,000 marijuana plants and 215 pounds of processed marijuana. The investigation began in January 2024 when Missouri State Police stopped a counterfeit Amazon delivery van and discovered 246 pounds of packaged marijuana that had allegedly been picked up from the Lindsey location.

OBN spokesperson Mark Woodward said that Bright Stones LLC had obtained its marijuana growing license through fraudulent means, using a "straw ownership" scheme. "The farm's paperwork listed a 'ghost owner' who was paid to put his name on the license, concealing the real owner's identity," Woodward stated. While no arrests have been made yet, the OBN has identified the individual connected to this farm, who also has ties to at least three other illegal marijuana farms the bureau has shut down.

Why this matters: Oklahoma's legalization of medical marijuana in 2018 led to a surge in illegal grow operations run by criminal organizations. Legislative efforts in recent years have allowed the OBN to crack down on these illicit farms, with over 6,000 shut down in the past two years alone.

The main target of the Bright Stones investigation has been linked to several other illegal marijuana operations in Oklahoma. As a result of the OBN's enforcement efforts, the number of criminal organizations operating illegal marijuana farms in the state has seen a drastic reduction, with grower registrations dropping from 9,400 in 2021 to around 3,200 currently.

Woodward emphasized that lawmakers understand the magnitude of the problem and are working closely with the OBN to address these issues. "Since 2021, OBN's Marijuana Enforcement Teams have shut down over 3,000 marijuana grows, arrested over 300 individuals, and seized over a million pounds of marijuana as part of criminal investigations into fraudulently obtained licenses and black market growing operations," he said. The investigation into Bright Stones LLC and associated illegal farms is ongoing, with further arrests expected.

Key Takeaways

  • OBN raided Bright Stones LLC, seizing 9,000 plants, 215 lbs of marijuana.
  • Bright Stones obtained license fraudulently using "straw ownership" scheme.
  • Oklahoma's legal medical marijuana led to surge in illegal grow ops.
  • OBN shut down over 6,000 illegal farms in 2 years, reduced grower registrations.
  • Ongoing investigation into Bright Stones, more arrests expected.