In Burlington, Connecticut, law enforcement officials have dismantled an extensive psychedelic mushroom cultivation operation, believed to be worth millions. State police acted on an anonymous tip that brought them to the residence of Westen Soule.
Upon arrival, officers observed multiple pieces of ventilation equipment, which they recognized as typical for covert laboratory setups. Soule, the homeowner, led the authorities to a separate structure on his property, where they discovered a sophisticated mushroom-growing enterprise.
State police were initially prevented from entering the main residence by Soule but were able to carry out a search warrant subsequently. The seizure included around $8.5 million in psilocybin mushrooms, a hallucinogenic variety often referred to as “magic mushrooms,” at various stages of development. Despite initial denials regarding the legality of the mushrooms, Soule conceded post-discovery that they were indeed psilocybin, the Alcohol and Drug Foundation notes for causing significant sensory, cognitive, and emotional shifts, and are known to induce hallucinations.
Images released by the Connecticut State Police showcase the breadth of Soule’s operation, with metal shelves laden with large bags of mushrooms extending from floor to ceiling throughout the rooms. In one photograph, a room packed with what is alleged to be illicit substances is visible through a partially ajar door, equipped with a ventilator.
Soule has been taken into custody facing charges of narcotics possession with intent to sell or distribute and operating a drug factory. His bond was set at $250,000. Soule’s arraignment is scheduled for November 16 at the New Britain Superior Court.