Chinese national residing in Fresno charged in illegal marijuana grow operation
FRESNO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment today against Yunquan Jiang, 48, a Chinese national residing in Fresno, charging him with cultivating and possessing with intent to distribute over 1,000 marijuana plants inside his residence, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott and Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Daniel C. Comeaux announced.
According to court documents, on Feb. 7, narcotics detectives served a search warrant at a house on East White Avenue in Fresno. The living room, kitchen, bedrooms, and garage had been retrofitted with fluorescent grow lights suspended from the ceiling, charcoal air-filtration systems, ballasts, and numerous fans. Authorities discovered a total of 1,263 marijuana plants inside the home. Jiang, the sole occupant, was arrested for cultivation of marijuana and possession of marijuana for sale.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Fresno County Sherriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin J. Gilio is prosecuting the case.
If convicted, Jiang faces a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 10 years in prison and up to life in prison and a fine of up to $10 million. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.