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Drug bust cases renewed

Becky Vargo • Jul 21, 2015 at 2:17 PM
bvargo@grandhaventribune.com 616-842-6400 ext. 231

Douglas Harjer of Grand Haven and Joe and Peggy Wimmer of Grand Haven Township are among those named in the indictment.

This is the second time an indictment has been handed down in the campaign known as Operation High Mileage.

Several police agencies participated in a multiple-city bust in October 2013, arresting 27 people at the time. That same month, all of the charges were dismissed at the prosecuting attorney’s request so that officials would have more time to get the case ready for a Grand Jury review, Harjer’s attorney, Dan Grow, said at the time.

The complaint issued Tuesday says that, from January 2009 to Oct. 16, 2013, there was a conspiracy in Ottawa, Kent, Muskegon and Oceana counties to manufacture, possess and distribute marijuana.

“In order to promote the conspiracy, the defendants developed a plan to hide behind the framework of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act as they sold marijuana to persons who both consumed and resold the marijuana to other persons in violation of federal law,” the indictment reads.

Read the full indictment: Download the Related File (PDF) below this story.

Many of those charged are members of a group known as the Medical Marijuana Team, or MMT.

“The MMT prided itself on providing high-grade marijuana selling for between $180 and $220 per ounce,” the indictment says. “Many MMT members owned and wore clothing with a distinctive logo bearing the letters ‘MTM’ with marijuana leaves layered into it. Some members sport permanent tattoos with the organization’s logo.”

MMT members bought and sold marijuana, hashish, marijuana wax and other related products, the indictment reads. The team members owned “grow “stores in West Michigan, including Plant Paradise and In Do Grow, which sold supplies and equipment to people interested in the manufacture and use of marijuana.

Shawn Andrew Taylor, Molly Anne Taylor and Robert Housley were the main operators of the conspiracy, operating primarily out of Muskegon County, according to the indictment.

The indictment claims marijuana-growing operations were conducted at 22 locations, including the Wimmer house in the 15600 block of 164th Avenue in Grand Haven Township, and at a residence in the 100 block of East Savidge Street in Spring Lake.

The Wimmers were cited for growing more than 50 plants. Harjer was cited for growing less than 50 plants.

Harjer’s attorney said his client will be reporting to federal court for arraignment on May 5.

“Defendants previously arrested and processed are going to self-surrender over the next couple of weeks,” Grow said.

Grow said they’re not expecting a jail sentence in Harjer’s case.

“We’re expecting a probationary sentence,” the attorney said.

To read the whole story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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