Drug Enforcement Administration

San Francisco

Christopher Nielsen, Special Agent in Charge

September 23, 2011

Contact: Casey Rettig

Phone Number: (415) 436-7994

Madera Man Sentenced For Marijuana Cultivation

FRESNO, CA - United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Anthony D. Williams, announced that today United States District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill sentenced Ediberto Alvarez Ceballos, 31, of Madera, to two years in prison for a conspiracy to cultivate marijuana.

According to court documents, Ceballos conspired with others to grow marijuana. On June, 24, 2011, he pleaded guilty and admitted that he had helped tend 3,710 marijuana plants in the Fresno County mountains. One site where he tended plants was Soaproot Saddle in Fresno County.

Juan Chavez Martinez and Noe Ceballos-Alvarez pleaded guilty in July 2011 and are scheduled to be sentenced on October 14, 2011 and September 30, 2011, respectively.

This case was part of the 2009-2010 Operation Trident multi-agency investigation effort in Madera, Fresno, and Tulare Counties, which eradicated approximately 663,898 marijuana plants, primarily from public lands in the Sierra foothills and mountains, and has resulted in the conviction of 66 federal criminal defendants. This investigation involved agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration, the California Department of Justice Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement, and the Fresno and Madera County Sheriff’s Departments. Assistant United States Attorney Kevin Rooney prosecuted the case.

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