Five men were indicted Thursday for growing marijuana on agricultural land in Stanislaus County, U.S. Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
Thounethepmith Vongsenekeo, 56, Sam Kounhavong, 50, and Senghachanh Boungnavong, 33, all of Fresno, and Phanetavanh Southammavong, 43, and Symery Saykganya, 56, both of Modesto, are charged with conspiring to cultivate the marijuana plants and possessing them with the intent to distribute.
According to authorities, the men were found at a marijuana grow site in a rural area along the San Joaquin River near Newman. Agents eradicated 907 marijuana plants and seized a firearm from the site. One of the men admitted he was the security guard for the operation.
If convicted, the men face a mandatory minimum prison term of five years and a maximum term of 40 years in prison, and a $5 million fine.