A joint investigation helmed by the Kern County Sheriff’s Office, with the assistance of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation found and destroyed $1 billion worth of illegally grown marijuana plants.

According to CNN, The team followed through on search warrants for 11 fields in the Arvin area, about 100 miles north of Los Angeles, totaling 459 acres of land. Narcotics units from the Sheriff's Office "seized and eradicated" an estimated 10 million marijuana plants.

The plants were being grown under the veil of legal hemp production; however, The Food and Agricultural Code and Health and Safety Code limit THC percentages of this designation to under 0.3%. These plants were far above that. There is a research exemption “if that cultivation or possession contributes to the development of types of industrial hemp that will comply with the three-tenths of 1 percent THC limit established in this division," but that also does not seem to apply here. 

The Kern County Sheriff's Office wrote in a Facebook post, "Preliminary testing showed the levels of THC in these fields were well over the legal limit for industrial hemp production and were in fact cannabis. The investigation is ongoing." Follow the office on Facebook for future updates.