Largest marijuana ring grew on New York reservations

The largest marijuana ring in New York history exploited jurisdictional loopholes on three reservations, The Syracuse Post-Standard reports.

Alexander Cammacho and Anthony DeJohn used the Mohawk, Oneida and Onondaga reservations to smuggle at least six tons of high-grade marijuana into the United States in 2004 and 2005. They were convicted earlier this year in federal court.

Neither Cammacho nor DeJohn are members of a tribe. But Cammacho was able to live in and operate out of a $400,000 house that belonged to his wife, a member of the Oneida Nation. He said federal authorities couldn't seize his house since it was on Indian land.

DeJohn lived on the Onondaga Nation. Since local sheriff's deputies have to obtain the tribe's permission before entering the reservation, DeJohn was able to flee before he was captured. The tribe says it wasn't aware of his criminal activities.

"There has always been that interplay, but now we're seeing a lot of non-natives from the Syracuse area" use reservations for drug trafficking, the Franklin County District Attorney said.

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How Pot Ring Exploited Indian Land (The Syracuse Post-Standard 12/3)