350+ animals removed from home in Catawba County after investigation

$500 million worth of poppy plants seized in NC drug raid

Poppy plant field valued at $500M seized near Hickory

Deputies in Catawba County, North Carolina arrested a man after they found a field with almost an acre of opium poppy.

The opium poppy plant fields are reportedly this is the second field of this sort found in California.

"I guess", Xiong said, "you are here for the opium". "Only residents know that it is out there at the end of the road".

The acre of poppy plants were in rows, similar to how corn would be planted, in a field behind a home. The station identified Cody Xiong as the suspect arrested and charged with manufacture and trafficking by possession. However, Xiong was not charged in connection with the chicken found.

Xiong later posted bail for $45,000 and was released, stated NBC News. It's unclear if he has a lawyer.

Sheriff's deputies pulled up more than 2,000 opium poppy plants, initially valued at $500 million, from a yard near Claremont on Tuesday.

Reid's investigators believed the plants were being grown and harvested in Catawba County, then shipped elsewhere to be turned into heroin.

The opium is extracted from the seed pods' sap immediately after the bulb is scliced.

They don't just grow cotton down south.

The investigation into Xiong's operation now involves DEA agents.

When Sheriff Reid and his deputies were pulling up and confiscating poppy plants on Tuesday, they also noticed there were chickens on the farm.

"If the plant is being used to produce opium, this will make a dent on distribution somewhere", sheriff's Capt. Jason Reid told the Hickory newspaper.

A total of 358 animals were removed from a Claremont home Wednesday, Catawba County Animal Services said.

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