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Mexican Nationals Arrested in East Texas Marijuana Growing Operation

Marijuana field

Several people are wanted in Smith County Texas in connection with a marijuana grow operation.
Sheriff Larry Smith says four Mexican Nationals have been arrested and the search continues for several others.

This investigation dates back to the summer of 2015 when agents uncovered three cultivation sites and seized more than 20 thousand marijuana plants.

This began a massive operation called Operation Joint Venture including agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Eduardo Ramirez Pineda has been identified as a leader in the areas drug trafficking trade. Pineda is still on the run today. Agents are also looking for Benito Duarte Ramirez.

After months of following up on all leads, agents believe this massive grow operation is linked to the Los Zetas Cartel out of Mexico.

To date, detectives have seized more than 77 thousand marijuana plants from fifteen sites.

So far, only three people have been arrested, but 13 arrest warrants have been issued for suspects in this grow operation.

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