*In New York City, 45 people, including one of the Founders of the Rock-A-Fella record label, were caught up in a raid by federal authorities on Friday.
Kareem Burke, who, along with Jay-Z and Damon Dash, was caught on a wiretap discussing “grow houses” with the ringleader, Geovanny “Manny” Rodriguez Perez, federal prosecutors in Manhattan said. Also nabbed was Matthew Stang, a writer and senior ad rep at High Times magazine, which advocates the legalization of marijuana.
Prosecutors allege the marijuana was grown using hydroponics in Florida and smuggled to New York for street sales.
Jim Hayes, head of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in New York, said the action was the result of an 18-month investigation involving his agency, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the New York Police Department, as well as the city’s Department of Investigation and Special Narcotics Prosecutor’s office.
Authorities said they seized nearly $2 million and more than 360 pounds of marijuana.
Watch raw video of the arrests: