Campaign Against Marijuana Planting Receives National Award From The Office Of National Drug Control Policy

Thursday, January 19, 2006
Contact: (415) 703-5837, agpressoffice@doj.ca.gov

(WASHINGTON D.C.) – Attorney General Bill Lockyer today announced the Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement’s (BNE) Campaign Against Marijuana Planting (CAMP) program was selected by the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to receive a Distinguished Service Award for superior performance in 2005.

“CAMP’s continued success is a result of state, local and federal law enforcement agencies working together,” Lockyer said. “The large increase in illegal marijuana seizures over the past seven years is a reflection of the skill and commitment of each law enforcement agency that participates in the program.”

Last year CAMP, a multi-agency law enforcement task force, unified the marijuana eradication efforts of more than 110 federal, state and local law enforcement agencies throughout California. CAMP agents provided expert-level training to participating agencies, which included aerial marijuana locating techniques, helicopter insertion methods, safety practices and eradication methods.

CAMP’s efforts resulted in a record-breaking season, seizing more than 1.1 million illegal marijuana plants during the eradication season worth an estimated street value of more than $4.5 billion. It conducted 237 raids in 31 counties during the traditional growing season, which runs from late July through early October. In addition to the plant eradication, officers made 42 arrests and seized 76 weapons.

Since 1999, CAMP has seized a total of 3,476,410 illegal marijuana plants worth an estimated $13.9 billion, made 203 arrests and seized 274 weapons.

Representing CAMP at ONDCP’s National Marijuana Eradication Conference, where the awards were handed out, were Director of the Division of Law Enforcement (DLE), Rick Oules; BNE Chief, John Gaines; BNE Assistant Chief, Craig Buehler; BNE Senior Special Agent in Charge, James Parker; BNE Special Agent in Charge, Val Jimenez; BNE CAMP Commander, Michael Johnson; California National Guard, Lt. Col. Tim Kelley and Lt. Col. Jay Brookman; BNE Supervisor, Robert McLaughlin; CAMP Regional Operations Commanders, Jack Nelsen, Ed Plantaric, Eduardo Heredia, Neil Cuthbert and Ron Brovetto; and Shasta County Sheriff’s Department, Lt. Tim McDonald.

# # #