Man Held in Operation of Underground ‘Pot’ Farm

Narcotics detectives arrested a 61-year-old Palmdale man Wednesday on charges he built a sophisticated underground marijuana farm under the Mojave Desert, a lone-wolf operation inspired by his son’s alleged involvement with a nationwide ring that constructed several such farms in California and Arizona, investigators said.

Richard E. Yerger Sr. was taken into custody at his home by Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department detectives on suspicion of constructing and operating an underground farm in Llano, a remote community in the Antelope Valley.

He was named in an earlier federal indictment in the case. His arrest brings to 20 the number of people in custody or named in indictments after discovery of what sheriff’s and federal narcotics investigators said were five high-tech underground marijuana farms.