October 12, 2012
Contact: SA Timothy Massino
Phone Number: (213) 621-6700
Rancho Cucamonga Man Convicted For Operating Large-Scale Marijuana Grow Operation
Defendant was former President of G3 Holistics, Inc.
LOS ANGELES - On October 12, 2012, a federal jury in Los Angeles convicted Mr. Aaron Sandusky, 41, of Rancho Cucamonga, former president of G3 Holistics, Inc., a marijuana business operating in the Inland Empire, of one count of conspiracy to manufacture marijuana plants, to possess with intent to distribute marijuana plants, and to maintain a drug-involved premises; and one count of possession with intent to distribute marijuana plants. On each count of conviction, the jury made a finding that Mr. Sandusky’s crimes involved at least 1,000 marijuana plants.
As a result of the jury’s verdicts and findings, Mr. Sandusky faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison. Each of the two counts of conviction also carries a maximum possible sentence of life in prison. The jury could not reach unanimous verdicts on the remaining four counts in the indictment, which charged Mr. Sandusky with maintaining drug-involved premises at each of G3's marijuana stores in Upland, Colton, and Moreno Valley, as well as G3’s marijuana grow operation in Ontario. The court declared a mistrial on these counts.
Mr. Sandusky’s arrest, indictment, and conviction came after he had received written warnings in October 2011 from the U.S. Attorney’s Office that G3’s marijuana stores were operating in violation of federal law. While Mr. Sandusky closed G3's stores in Colton and Moreno Valley, he kept the Upland store open, even after federal authorities executed two separate search warrants at the G3 Upland store, filed an asset forfeiture lawsuit against the property housing the Upland store, and filed a second asset forfeiture lawsuit against nearly $11,500 in cash that had been seized in November 2011 by federal agents during the execution of search warrants at the Upland store and Mr. Sandusky’s home.
Mr. Sandusky was one of six people connected to G3 who were indicted by a federal grand jury in June 2012. The other defendants, who each pled guilty prior to trial, are:
- John Leslie Nuckolls II, 31, of Rialto, who was a founder and owner of G3 and who has called himself the CFO of G3;
- Keith Alan Sandusky, 44, of Rancho Cucamonga, who was in charge of the day-to-day marijuana distribution operations of G3;
- Paul Neumann Brownbridge, 29, of Upland, who worked at G3’s Ontario marijuana grow operation;
- Richard Irwin Kirchnavy, 45, of Rancho Cucamonga, who worked at G3’s Ontario marijuana grow operation; and
- Brandon Anton Gustafson, 30, of Yucaipa, who worked at G3’s Ontario marijuana grow operation.
After the verdicts, the court remanded Mr. Sandusky into custody and set a sentencing hearing for January 7, 2013.
The investigation of this case was conducted by special agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration with assistance from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.