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News Release
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Illicit Marijuana Organization Grow Sites Dismantled in Bend and La Pine (Photo) - 05/23/23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

La Pine, OR – 

On Tuesday, May 23rd, 2023, detectives with the Deschutes County Illegal Marijuana Enforcement team and the Central Oregon Drug Enforcement Team concluded a several-month-long investigation involving a group based in the La Pine area home that is allegedly growing and processing illicit marijuana and delivering to the mid-west and eastern portions of the United States. 

This case began with community complaints and tips about a Bend man operating an illicit marijuana grow in a residential area on Berg Lane in North Bend.

The Deschutes County Illicit Marijuana Enforcement Team requested the assistance of the Central Oregon Drug Team to further their investigation. As a result, CODE and DCIME detectives, drug agents, and intelligence analysts conducted surveillance of the identified man. During these surveillance operations, detectives identified a large criminal organization with an additional property in NW Bend and three growing and processing properties in La Pine.

On May 23rd, 2023, at approximately 7:00 AM, CODE and DCIME detectives, with the assistance of the Deschutes County Sheriff's SWAT Team and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), executed simultaneous Search Warrants in the following areas. 

· 800 block of NW Newport Ave, Bend

· 63000 block of Berg Lane, Bend

· 16000 block of Dyke Road, La Pine

· 52000 block of Polar Drive, La Pine

· 52200 block of Polar Drive, La Pine

During these search warrants, a total of 665 lbs. of processed marijuana flower and 630 marijuana plants in various stages of growth were seized as evidence from the five locations. In addition to marijuana, detectives also seized a large amount of US currency, evidence of inter-state trafficking, and financial crimes. 

During the execution of these search warrants, several people were detained and interviewed at the scenes. No arrests have been made at this time. However, several arrests are pending Grand Jury indictments. The names of these people are being withheld until additional follow-up investigations are complete, and indictments have been issued. 

Detectives are attempting to locate the following people of interest in this case;

Daniel Liautaud, age 36, of Bend, Oregon

Jackson Liautaud, age 31, of La Pine, Oregon

Anyone with information about the Liautauds' whereabouts is asked to call Detectives Dustin Miller or Tony Ramos at 541-693-9111 and reference case 23-25857. Do not attempt to arrest or detain them if seen. 

Possessing small amounts of marijuana is legal for recreational use in Oregon. However, large, unlicensed marijuana operations remain illegal. These unregulated operations pose dangers to the public and the environment. 

For example, during the search warrant on Berg Lane, detectives found the septic system was malfunctioning and overwhelmed with waste. Raw sewage was flooding the property and nearby soil for a lengthy time. A failing septic system can contaminate well water and nearby waterbodies. Untreated wastewater is a health hazard and can cause many human diseases. Once this untreated wastewater enters the groundwater, neighborhood wells and groundwater can be contaminated. Contaminated water used to cultivate illicit marijuana and later sold to the unwitting public is unsafe for consumption.

A Deschutes County Building Code Compliance Officer assisted after detectives observed numerous additional building code violations, in addition to the failing septic system. Some properties had dangerous electrical wiring, unpermitted electrical panels, exposed electrical wires, and unpermitted interior walls.

The Deschutes County Illegal Marijuana Enforcement (DCIME) program is a partnership between the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, the Bend Police Department, and the Deschutes County District Attorney's Office to address illegal marijuana activity in Deschutes County. 

CODE and DCIME were assisted by the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, Deschutes County Sheriff's Street Crime Unit, Redmond Street Crimes Unit, Bend Police Department and the Oregon State Police with the investigation, eradication, and dismantling of these sites.

Attached Media Files: Trailer2 , Trailer1
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