Two men have pleaded guilty to operating a large-scale marijuana growing farm on a mid-Missouri federal wildlife refuge.
More than 1,900 marijuana plants were found by law enforcement officers last October at the Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge in Howard County, Mo., about 120 miles east of Kansas City.
Carlos Horacio Vasquez-Duarte, 27, and Rigaberto Camacho Reyes, 24, both citizens of Mexico, were arrested at the site, which federal prosecutors said was located on about five acres and included five tents where the plants were processed.
Both men pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Jefferson City to federal drug conspiracy charges.
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Investigators estimated that more than 880 plants were growing and another 1,100 were found cut and drying in the processing tents, according to prosecutors.
An elaborate watering system was discovered at the site and authorities found a large amount of fertilizer and growing equipment.