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Police Find $500 Million In Opium Poppy Plants By Accident In N.C.

Opium Poppy Plants

CLAREMONT, N.C. (AP) — A field of poppy plants that could be used to make opium was discovered in North Carolina and had an estimated value of $500 million, a sheriff says. Authorities admit that is a rough estimate on the value, because the plants still need to be weighed.

Plants were being pulled up  and loaded into trailers.

The acre of poppy plants was in rows, similar to how corn would be planted, in a field behind a home on Poultry Road. The plants are used in the manufacturing of opium, and growing them is far from legal. The field was located near Claremont, a Catawba County town about 40 miles north of Charlotte. It has a population of about 1,300 people.

“This is the second one in t

he nation,” Sheriff Coy Reid told the Hickory Daily Record. “One of our narcotics investigators came to the house looking for something else. When he knocked on the door, the guys said, ‘I guess you’re here about the opium.’ ”

The sheriff’s office says one person in a nearby home, Cody Xiong, was arrested and charged with manufacture and trafficking by possession. It’s unclear if he has a lawyer. Plants were being pulled up Tuesday, and loaded into trailers.

Catawba County Sheriff’s Office deputies got a tip last week and were able to obtain a search warrant. Officials do not believe the plants were being made into opium on the property.

The sheriff said the only other opium poppy plant field has found in the United States this year was in California.

“The plants are being harvested here, and sent somewhere else where the opium is being produced from the plant,” Capt. Jason Reid said told WBTV.

Source: AP

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Phyllis Coley
Phyllis D. Coley is CEO/Publisher of Spectacular Magazine and Host of Spectacular Magazine Radio Show. With a B.A. in English from NCCU, the Durham native began her professional career as Promotions/Marketing Director for New York City’s WKTU-FM. While at the radio station, Coley discovered the rap group Kid ‘n Play and managed them for five years, guiding their music and movie careers to success. Moving back to Durham, Coley produced a nationally syndicated television show, The Electric Factory, while working as News Director for FOXY 107/104. In April 2002, recognizing a void in highlighting the achievements of African Americans, she started her own business publishing ACE Magazine. Coley launched Spectacular Magazine in November 2004. Recognizing the lack of pertinent and truthful information, Coley began Spectacular Magazine Radio Show in March 2009. Coley is the organizer of Durham's Annual MLK/Black History Month Parade and the Annual North Carolina Juneteenth Celebration. She currently serves on Central Children’s Home Board of Directors, Raleigh Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Advisors, as Immediate Past Secretary of the Durham Rotary Club Board of Directors and is one of the founding members of the Triangle United Way’s African American Leadership Initiative.

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