Rural areas seek help stopping pot crop
In terraced dirt, nurtured by an elaborate sprinkler system, 465 marijuana plants have been quietly tucked away, obscured by the winding branches of vine maple and alder bushes.
Law enforcement officials have seized thousands of plants in Washington state in recent months, forcing them to abandon their ongoing battle on methamphetamine for days at a time.
...increasing enforcement in California and Oregon is pushing pot production by Mexican nationals north.
The U.S. Department of Justice noted in July that Mexican drug traffickers were expanding their areas of operation, with continued growth expected in isolated areas of Idaho, Oregon and Washington.
The largest, a field of more than 60,000 plants on south-central Washington's Yakama Indian Reservation, was traced to organized crime in Mexico.
How I would cover this if I wrote for The Oregonian:
Meet Juan, a hardworking migrant who left his family in Mexico with dreams of a better life for all of them. "I wanted to make more money" explained Juan, "and I don't mind breaking the law."
Every day hundreds of migrants just like Juan get an early start on the day walking through large forested areas to get to their work site. Pruning, planting, fertilizing, and picking are all jobs that must be done manually by this largely underground workforce.
"I send money back to my family" says Juan. "It helps to pay off the corrupt Mexican officials" Laborers like Juan are trying to make a decent life for themselves but some people in the community are upset. "We wish they would stop breaking the laws" says one member of a racist group known as the "Woodburn Police."
But this hatred doesn't stop people like Juan from wanted to experience the American dream. "The city built us a nice apartment complex, they give us free food, they pay for my electricity, and I get to smoke all the pot I want. I still consider Mexico to be a better country though." "Americans don't treat me fairly" asserts Juan.