Police swooped down on two large rural area residents on Wednesday in search of illicit crops — and they didn’t come up empty handed.
The raids saw the Oceanside and Port Alberni RCMP, in conjunction with the RCMP Island District Drug Section, executed two simultaneous search warrants at marijuana grow operations, one in Errington and one in Beaver Creek.
Oceanside RCMP Corporal Jesse Foreman said the searches resulted from an investigation into large-scale marijuana grow operations at each site, where four industrial-sized greenhouses were being used to grow marijuana.
Approximately 2,500 marijuana plants were seized from each search site, with a potential total value of over $1 million.
Foreman said a total of nine adults were arrested at both sites, including Canadian and Polish citizens.
“Everyone arrested is believed to have some involvement in overseeing the cultivation of marijuana,” Foreman said. “The investigators suspect that these offences have been ongoing for several years in a variety of locations.”
All suspects have been released from custody with a first court appearances set for mid-September.
The investigation, Foreman added, is ongoing, so anyone who has information that would be of use for the investigation is asked to call the Oceanside RCMP detachment at 250-248-6111 or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.