Washington state police implicate Chinese nationals in marijuana bust

Did you miss the webinar “Women Leaders in Cannabis: Shattering the Grass Ceiling?” Head to MJBiz YouTube to watch it now!


Police in western Washington state have made arrests in an investigation into what the Tacoma Police Department described as “a major illegal marijuana grow operation by Chinese nationals.”

The investigation involved search warrants served at residences across three counties, Tacoma police announced last week on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

Police reported seizing more than 3,500 cannabis plants plus “78 pounds of manufactured product” as well as cash, vehicles and a handgun, the Tacoma News Tribune reported.

Multiple law enforcement agencies were involved, including the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The Washington state arrests come amid increasing scrutiny of alleged Chinese organized crime links to illicit marijuana production in the United States, with Politico reporting last month that U.S. congressmembers have sought more information on the topic from the Department of Justice.

Legislators from Maine have also called on the Justice Department to move against “illegal Chinese-owned marijuana operations” in that state.