Fresno Teacher’s Aide Sentenced for Marijuana Cultivation Operation in Trinity County
FRESNO, Calif. — Kevin Nouthai Yang, aka Thai Yang, 49, of Fresno, was sentenced today to three years and 10 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, for conspiring to cultivate, distribute and possess with intent to distribute marijuana grown on property that he owned in Hay Fork in the Shasta Trinity National Forest, Acting United States Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
In sentencing Yang, U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill also ordered the forfeiture of the property and a firearm.
According to court documents, Yang, who was then a high school teacher’s aide for the Central Unified School District, was found armed at the Hay Fork property during the execution of a federal search warrant. Yang was in the process of harvesting marijuana and was in possession of 324 pounds of marijuana and 200 marijuana plants. He was also in possession of restricted-use pesticides that had been transported across public land for use in the marijuana cultivation operation. Yang has since resigned from his teaching position.
U.S. Forest Service agents obtained the search warrant after seeing hundreds of large, mature marijuana plants growing on Yang’s property. Some of the marijuana grown on Yang’s property had already been transported to Fresno for distribution.
This case was the product of an investigation by the U.S. Forest Service and the Trinity County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Karen A. Escobar prosecuted the case.