Cops Find ‘Marijuana Megafarm’ in Northern Wisconsin

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Seth Resnick/Science Faction/Corbis

The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest in Wisconsin is a lush, green paradise. But the AP reports investigators happened upon a different kind of green growing in one forest corner.

Law enforcement agents say a band of Hispanic men were growing thousands of marijuana plants in remote plots in the forest. Oconto County Sheriff Mike Jansen said they seized about 50,000 plants, but the number could actually amount to a more modest 10,000. Eleven men were arraigned on charges of conspiring to manufacture and distribute 1,000 pot plants, and one man, the potential mastermind, was charged with conspiracy. Authorities remain mum, but some suspect there could be a link to Mexican drug cartels given the Wisconsin group’s farming style and use of public land.

As states like California mull legalizing marijuana, states like Wisconsin have seen seized pot plants skyrocket in number in the past several years. In 2008, authorities in Wisconsin alone seized 32,000 marijuana plants.