Over One Billion Dollars Worth of Marijuana Seized

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - Federal and state agents have arrested nearly 100 people in a sweep of marijuana-growing operations that's netted more than $1.7 billion worth of pot in California's Sierra Nevada range.

Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims says several Mexican drug cartels are involved in the operations. She says most of the 97 people arrested are Mexican nationals.

Gil Kerlikowske, who directs the White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy, says agents have destroyed more than 432,000 marijuana plants during the three-week operation, which ends Friday.

Kerlikowske was in Fresno on Thursday to express support for the sweep, which involves 450 agents covering the remote stretches of Fresno, Madera and Tulare counties.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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