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Close to 50 marijuana plants were found growing in remote fields in Hartland and the Towns of Cambria and Lockport late last week, Niagara County sheriff's deputies said.

About 40 plants were ripped out of a cornfield at 5 p.m. Thursday off Townline and Wruck roads, Hartland, after they were spotted by a sheriff's helicopter crew on patrol, Niagara County Drug Task Force Chief Craig Harmon said.

Investigators Michael Messina and Peter Cocco harvested the plants and took them to the Sheriff's Department for destruction, Harmon said.

That same evening, six marijuana plants were taken from another cornfield on the north side of Shunpike Road, near Budd Road, in Cambria after they were spotted by the helicopter crew, deputies said.

Friday, the sheriff's road patrol took two more plants out of a field off Dysinger Road in the Town of Lockport, deputies said.

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