Update: A just-released indictment related to Operation Sweet Leaf, in which 25 metro-area marijuana grows were raided, names 22-year-old Jordan Buehrer as the alleged ringleader of the scheme -- although Buehrer's LinkedIn profile suggests another name.
The bare-bones page lists him as the owner of "jordans enterprises."
Other names appearing in the indictment according to the Denver Post piece linked above include Zachary Oviatt of Breckenridge, whose Facebook page is loaded with snowboarding links and images. Here's his profile photo:
Among the allegations in the indictment: Individuals sent a shipment of more than five pounds of marijuana through the mail to New Jersey last August, and another twenty pounds to Kearney, Nebraska in September.
Look below for our earlier coverage.
Original post, 1:23 p.m. January 25: At this writing, a slew of law enforcement agencies are engaged in what authorities have cleverly dubbed Operation Sweet Leaf -- a raid of 25 marijuana grows scattered throughout the metro area.
According to the 17th Judicial District DA's office, sixteen arrests have been made thus far.
As for the locations of the grows, eighteen are said to be in Adams County, four in Denver, one in Weld County, one in Erie and one in Breckenridge. A total of 69 criminal charges have been leveled against the sixteen suspects, including racketerring and conspiracy under the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act (COCCA). That suggests some or all of the grows are thought to be linked together in a combined criminal enterprise.
The DA's office stresses that the marijuana was not being grown for medical purposes, with much of it being shipped out of state. According to 9News, more than 1,000 plants have been seized to date, including around 200 at a suburban location in Thornton.
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We've placed a call to Commander Jerry Peters of the North Metro Drug Task Force, the agency reportedly heading up the raids, with assistance from the Internal Revenue Service, the U.S. Postal Service, the Denver Police Department and several other outfits. When and if he gets back to us, we'll update this post. In the meantime, look below to see the aforementioned 9News report.
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More from our Marijuana archive: "Marijuana: U.S. Attorney 'not bluffing' about seizing dispensaries near schools."