Man sentenced to 5 years for growing marijuana on federal land in Colorado

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on July 05, 2018.

A 33-year-old man of Mesa County has been awarded five years of imprisonment for growing thousands of marijuana plants on an island in the Colorado River in Colorado.

Chief U.S. District Court Judge Marcia S. Krieger sentenced Santos Ramirez-Carrillo to serve 60 months in federal prison to conspiracy to manufacture and possess with intent to distribute 50 or more marijuana plants. This was informed by U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Special Agent in Charge Gary Mannino and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Denver Division Special Agent in Charge William T. McDermott. 

According to court records, Ramirez-Carrillo and another man - Ramirez-Alvarez - started living and working on an island in the Colorado River near DeBeque in May 2017 and worked with other people to grow marijuana in the area, including on federally owned land. The island is partly comprised of federal land, administered by BLM. 

Agents from several federal, local and state agencies executed a search warrant on the island on September 7, 2017. During the search of the islands, agents and officers discovered 9,156 plants. 

Officials say the marijuana growing, which is illegal on federal land, can have a severe effect on the environment.

Speaking about the sentencing of Santos Ramirez-Carrillo U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer said "Federal lands belong to all of us and we will continue to pursue and punish people who abuse those lands and exploit them for criminal purposes.”

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