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News Archive - 01

On Thursday January 31, 2002 the DEA claimed "Green Harvest" rules are followed. When performing Green Harvest operations DEA agents claim they abide by the rules the county has imposed on its police. "The guys are mandated to adhere to what the County Council has requested, what the police department asks, " said Honolulu District office DEA Special Agent In Charge Tom Kelly. " The issue was raised by Kona Councilman Curtis Tyler when he reviewed a report from the county Police Department regarding one of these infamous missions. The report cited at least three complaints about low flying helicopters, which are owned by the DEA. Tyler and retired Police Captain now Councilman Leningrad Elarionoff maintain the DEA should follow the rules which state helicopters must not fly below 1,000 feet. Elarionoff said he does not believe the Police Department should be held accountable for the DEA's actions and further commented "I would have much more respect for the DEA if they respected the rules that were imposed on the Police Department." Lt. Robert Hickcox of the Police Department's Vice Division in Kona, said "everybody involved in the marijuana eradication program abide by the county's rules, if they are going to be working on our island, all the pilots abide by those guidelines." "We don't have any of these issues anywhere else in Hawaii," said Kelly. "It's only over there (on the Big Island) that anyone has made issues of it." "That's the only place where people are testifying in front of the County Council about problems of marijuana eradication."

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