Over 8,000 marijuana plants were seized from a Penn Valley ranch, early this morning, with two arrests. The Nevada County Sheriff’s Department says the plants, on the 140-acre ranch, ranged in size from 16 inches to 5 feet tall, with the majority ready for harvest. 41-year-old Jesse Niesen of Rough and Ready and 38-year-old Espinoza Hernandez, from Tiaxcala, Mexico, were taken into custody on illegal cultivation charges. Niesen was found in a tent near the garden. Also, several Hispanic men were stopped and questioned as they tried to enter the property. When asked why they were there, they claimed it was to do some work for Niesen. They were then released. Meanwhile, the Sheriff’s Department says due to the damage done to the land, and the possibility of illegal excavation without a permit, Code Enforcement was also notified. Those officials described the excavation as severe.
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