Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

International Drug Cartels Infiltrating Forests

Another reason to decriminalize...
The Denver Post

Authorities have seized nearly 20,000 marijuana plants from national forest land in Colorado this summer, part of an apparent expansion of growing operations funded and run by international drug cartels.

The operations pose a significant safety hazard to hikers who may happen upon the armed farmers in the woods. They also threaten streams that can be polluted by chemicals used to grow marijuana.

"I don't want it to get to the point where it is not safe for the public to go out into national forests," said Michael Skinner, assistant agent in charge of the U.S. Forest Service's Rocky Mountain Region.

In the latest discovery, in Pike National Forest near Deckers on Friday, dozens of federal and local agents found a rifle, piles of discarded garbage, propane tanks and more than 14,500 marijuana plants in an area the size of a football field. It could be the largest marijuana-growing operation ever found in Colorado.

Last month, authorities seized 5,100 plants, worth an estimated $2.5 million, from a pot-growing operation in Pike National Forest near Cheesman Reservoir.

Forest Service spokesman Terry McCann said rangers had previously encountered only small mom-and-pop marijuana-growing operations.

The bigger farms found this year indicate that well-funded drug cartels have discovered the Rocky Mountains, Skinner said.

"We don't know why they have decided to come here," he said. "This is new for Colorado. We haven't had time to study the trend."

Federal authorities arrested two suspects in the most recent case, both illegal immigrants from Mexico, Skinner said. He did not release their names or details about charges.

Skinner said he has requested $100,000 this year to cover costs for searching for the farms. He admitted it is a drop in the bucket against a growing problem.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Whats the big suprise? Colorado is full of illegal mexicans. I dont want my tax dollars spent on searching the mountais for pot, i want it spent on sending illegals home and SEALING OUR BORDERS.
We could then do away with the DEA and save billions of wasted tax dollars. djw