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It was on March 26th that the Alaska State Trooper Western Alaska Alcohol and Narcotics Team was alerted by a tip that a man traveling from Gambell to Anchorage was carrying a large sum of cash, according to a trooper dispatch.
WAANT investigators contacted the man, and after contact, seized the thousands of dollars worth of cash that he had in his possession. It was suspected that the money was illegal drug proceeds and was going to be utilized to purchase additional drugs which in turn would be transported back to Gambell.
Through the contact with the Gambell man, the WAANT investigators developed information that would lead them to a residence located off of Armstrong Road in Houston, Alaska.
A little over three weeks later, on April 18th, WAANT investigators obtained a search warrant for the residence, and with the Mat-Su Narcotics Unit, contacted the people at the residence.Their search of the residence would find 104 live plants and 1.72 pounds of processed marijuana. Investigators seized the marijuana and grow equipment as well as items related to distribution from the home.
Then, on Friday, investigators went back to the residence and re-contacted 48-year-old Wasilla resident Craig Talbott, who was the prime suspect in the grow operation. Talbott was subsequently arrested and charged with four counts of Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance IV. He was transported and remanded to the Mat-Su Pretrial Facility and his bail was set at $20,000. Talbott was arraigned on the same day.
Investigators estimately the “Street Value” of the seized marijuana at $212,000.