Smokejumpers parachute into illegal pot garden

THURSDAY, MAY 9, 2013, 3 P.M.

No arrests made in Rogue River area

MEDFORD, Ore. (AP) — A team of smokejumpers parachuting into a fire in the mountains of Southern Oregon landed in an illegal pot garden being prepared for growing season.

Jackson County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Andrea Carlson says the smokejumpers notified authorities, who hiked into the remote Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest site. They seized two guns and more than 1,000 little marijuana plants ready for planting.

The six smokejumpers from a base in Redmond found the site Monday evening, when a rash of lightning strikes raked across Southern Oregon.

Carlson says the smokejumpers reported seeing other people, but were not sure whether they were pot growers. No one was arrested.

She says the site near the community of Applegate was being cultivated growers for Mexican drug gangs, and had been used before.

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