Conviction in pot-growing case

Portland man used Vancouver house as part of operation

By Patty Hastings, Columbian Social Services, Demographics, Faith



A Portland man was found guilty by a federal judge of conspiracy to manufacture and distribute marijuana, two counts of manufacturing marijuana, mortgage fraud and wire fraud, according to a bulletin from United States Attorney Amanda Marshall with the District of Oregon.

In late 2010 the Clark-Skamania Drug Task Force, now the Clark-Vancouver Regional Drug Task Force, and the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Unit received an anonymous letter about Tu Ngoc Tran’s marijuana trafficking in Oregon and Washington. On Dec. 21, investigators served a search warrant at three locations, including a residence in Vancouver, where officers found 238 marijuana plants, the bulletin said.

Investigators discovered Tran made false statements on loan applications in 2009 to secure mortgages on two houses used to grow marijuana, the bulletin said. The properties were seized for forfeiture, along with four vehicles used to transport marijuana.

When arrested, Tran claimed to a grower and caregiver for 10 patients under the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program, the bulletin said.

Sentencing is set for Feb. 25. Tran faces 40 years in prison and a $5 million fine.

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