Search on For Suspect Who Escaped Health Facility

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - Authorities are searching for a suspected marijuana dealer they say escaped from federal custody while undergoing treatment at a Fresno medical center.

Officials say Thanousone Volarat was at the center near downtown Fresno when he walked out the back door of the facility around 11 a.m. Monday and jumped into a red Honda being driven by a woman.

At the time of his escape the 31-year-old Volarat was wearing a red jumpsuit and was in shackles.

Volarat was custody after a grand jury had indicted him and two others in September of 2011 for allegedly growing marijuana and distributing it in other states.

The indictments came after the seizure of nearly 2,200 marijuana plants officials say were grown by the three.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office says Volarat and the two others were due to meet with prosecutors on March 11 to discuss a possible plea deal.

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