Pot bust leads to discovery of large moonshine operation

A large moonshine operation was discovered in Cocke County as officers investigated a pot patch found near Highway 160 and Highway 321. (Photo: Tennessee Dept. of Safety)

NEWPORT, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper flying around Cocke County looking for Marijuana patches found what he was looking for Tuesday morning, but the discovery lead to a high-proof surprise.

The pilot, who is part of the state's Marijuana Eradication Task Force, spotted a patch of pot plants in Cocke County. When officers were called to the scene to investigate, they also discovered an illegal moonshine still operation, according to a news release from the Tennessee Department of Safety.

The still was discovered in the area around Highway 160 and Highway 321.

"After obtaining a search warrant, investigators discovered approximately 50 marijuana plants, 200 gallons of Moonshine, and seven 500-gallon Moonshine stills," the news release states. "Six of the stills contained approximately 500 gallons of Mash."

In addition to THP, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the Alcoholic Beverage Commission assisted in the operation.

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