Two men were sentenced to prison Monday for thier involvement in a conspiracy to cultivate marijuana in a warehouse on South Union Avenue in Bakersfield, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
Joseph Taylor, 53, of Thousand Oaks was sentenced to three years and one month in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release that includes registration as drug offender and 20 hours of community service per week until employed. Dustin York, 35, of Newbury was sentenced to one year and 10 months in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release that includes registration as a drug offender.
According to court documents and proceedings, Taylor, York and their co-defendants Jeremy Dunn, 21, of Thousand Oaks, and Mark McGrath, 57, of Bakersfield, were found by law enforcement officers during the execution of a search warrant in a warehouse in southeast Bakersfield that housed a sophisticated indoor marijuana cultivation operation. Officers seized 1,161 marijuana plants.
This investigation led to six additional search warrants being executed in Ventura and Los Angeles counties where a fifth defendant, Joseph Nolan, 58, a Malibu businessman, was arrested and charged with the drug conspiracy.
McGrath has pleaded guilty and is currently awaiting sentencing. Nolan and Dunn have entered not guilty pleas and are scheduled for a status conference on March 11, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Barbara A. McAuliffe in Fresno.
If convicted, they face a sentence of 10 years to life in prison and a $4 million fine.
-- U.S. Attorney's office for the Eastern District of California