Authorities have found thousands of marijuana plants being illegally grown in De Beque Canyon.

The illegal grow and a campsite were found partially hidden on two islands in the Colorado River about a mile north of the Highway 65 exit in De Beque canyon along I-70.

According to published reports, authorities, including the Mesa County Sheriff's Office and the Drug Enforcement Agency, had been conducting surveillance in the area for for a few months before raiding the islands Thursday morning (September 7).

The illegal grow was being tended by three men. Two were arrested during the raid, the third was still at-large as of Thursday afternoon. The names of those arrested are being withheld pending additional investigation. Officials did say the suspects are believed to be from Mexico.

Over 9,000 marijuana plants were seized during the raid. The plants were removed from the islands and taken to James M. Robb Colorado State Park-Island Acres where they were loaded into trucks and hauled off to be destroyed.

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