NC deputies find $500 million worth of opium poppy plants

CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. — North Carolina deputies executed a search warrant Tuesday morning at a large poppy plant operation in Catawba County, WSOC reports.

Poppy plants are used to create opium, which is used to make drugs such as heroin. In North Carolina, it is illegal to grow them.

Cody Xiong was arrested and charged with manufacture and trafficking by possession, WBTV reports.

Around 10 deputies and SBI agents wore protective clothing to pull hundreds of plants out of the ground at the home.

The plants are expected to be worth around $500 million.

Deputies say they have never had an opium bust in Catawba County.