Raisin Growers Lawsuit

  • Aired:  08/13/13
  •  | Views: 57,633

Jason Jones hires a raisin-sniffing companion to track down the federal Raisin Administrative Committee, which has been confiscating Marvin Horne's crop. (4:59)

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE).

>> Jon: WELCOME BACK.

HOLD ON TIGHT.

WHAT FOLLOWS IS ONE OF THE MOST

IMPORTANT STORIES WE'VE EVER

COVERED EVER.

JASON JONES REPORTS.

>> AMERICA HAS ALWAYS HAD AN

OBSESSION WITH THE WILD WEST.

BUT HERE IN FRESNO, A MODERN DAY

JESSE JAMES IS TEARING THIS ONCE

SLEEPY COMMUNITY APART.

AND THIS PEACEFUL HAMLET OF

FAMILY FARMS PROVIDED THE

PERFECT COVER FOR A TRAFFICKING

RING SO BIG THAT THE FEDERAL

GOVERNMENT HIRED A PRIVATE

SECURITY FIRM TO BRING IT DOWN.

>> OUR OBJECTIVE WAS TO

INVESTIGATE THE PRODUCT THAT WAS

BEING PROCESSED AT MR. HORN'S

PLANT.

>> OUR MAIN BASE WAS EITHER HERE

AT THIS CORNER OR NORTH OF HI

PLANT.

>> WE HAD SIX TO EIGHT AGENTS

FROM SUNUP TO SUNDOWN.

>> WELL, HE CALLED ME A FAT ASS.

>> SEEMS A LITTLE DANGEROUS.

WHAT KIND OF PRODUCT ARE WE

TALKING ABOUT?

COKE?

HEROINE?

>> RAISINS.

>> THAT'S CODE FOR WHAT?

>> RAISINS.

>> HE'S A RAISIN OUTLAW.

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

>> THIS IS RAISIN OUTLAW MARVIN

HORNE WHO IS ACTUALLY ACCUSED OF

DEFRAUDING THE GOVERNMENT OF

DRIED FRUIT BECAUSE HE REFUSED

TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE UNITED

STATES NATIONAL RAISIN RESERVE--

WHICH APPARENTLY IS A REAL THING

THAT THE GOVERNMENT USES TO HELP

REGULATE THE COST OF RAISINS.

>> MY BIGGEST ISSUE WAS THE

RAISIN ADMINISTRATIVE COMMITTEE

NOW IS THEY CONFISCATE A PORTION

OF MY CROP AND DON'T PAY ME FOR

IT.

>> THAT JUST DEFIES ALL THOUGHT

OR RAISINS.

(LAUGHTER)

>> I STARTED STACKING MY RAISINS

UP, I DIDN'T WANT TO GIVE IT TO

THEM ANYMORE.

>> AND WHAT'S YOUR RAISIN FOR

DOING WHAT YOU'RE DOING?

(LAUGHTER)

>> MY WHOLE GOAL ALWAYS WAS TO

PACK MY OWN RAISINS AND SELL

THEM.

>> SO ESSENTIALLY, THAT IS YOUR

RAISON D'ETRE?

>> OKAY, JASON, I SEE YOU'RE

TRYING TO BE A LITTLE FUNNY HERE

BUT THIS IS NOT A JOKE.

THERE IS NO JOKE WHEN SOMEBODY

COMES AND TAKES YOUR FARM AWAY

FROM YOU.

THAT'S NO JOKE.

>> I'M SORRY.

I APOLOGIZE.

I WAS BEING UNRAISINNABLE.

(LAUGHTER)

I KNOW WHAT YOU'RE THINKING.

IT'S THE MIDDLE OF THE SUMMER,

THE BOSS DOESN'T COME BACK FOR

ANOTHER WEEK, I'M PHONING IN A

FIELD PIECE ABOUT (BLEEP)ING

RAISINS.

I WOULD HAVE AGREED WITH YOU

UNTIL I HEARD THIS.

HOW MUCH DO YOU OWE THEM NOW?

>> APPROXIMATELY $1.5 MILLION.

>> I'M SORRY?

$11 .5 MILLION?

>> YES.

>> THAT MAY SOUND RIDICULOUS.

THAT'S BECAUSE IT IS.

SO I HIGH HIRED A HIGHLY TRAINED

RAISIN SNIFFING COMPANION TO

HELP ME TRACK DOWN THE RAISIN

ADMINISTRATIVE COUNCIL.

>> OUR JOB IS TO MEASURE AND BE

AWARE OF THE SUPPLY AND DEMAND

PICTURE OF CALIFORNIA RAISINS

AND TO REGULATE THAT VOLUME BY

PERHAPS SETTING SOME ASIDE ON

THE SIDELINES FOR A WHILE.

>> I'M NO RAISIN EXPERT, BUT

THIS KIND OF SOUND LIKE TWO

SCOOPS OF BULL (BLEEP).

(LAUGHTER)

AND JUST WHEN I THOUGHT THIS

STORY COULDN'T GET STUPIDER, I

HEARD THIS.

>> SUN VALLEY RAISIN GROWERS

TOOK THEIR BATTLE WITH THE

FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ALL THE WAY

TO THE SUPREME COURT.

>> SO YOU MEAN TO TELL ME

SCALIA, ROBERTS, SOTOMAYOR, SAT

THERE AND LISTENED TO ORAL

ARGUMENTS OVER RAISINS?

>> YES.

AND THEY HAD SOME VERY

PENETRATING QUESTIONS.

>> AS THE SUPREME COURT

TRANSCRIPT SHOWS, THE COURT MAY

HAVE BEEN THE ONLY ONE TAKING

THIS SERIOUSLY.

>> CASE 12-123, HORNE V.

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE.

>> WHAT WAS THE INTEREST THAT

THEY'RE CLAIMING WAS TAKEN BY

THE GOVERNMENT?

>> DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MANY

LANDMARK CASES WE STILL HAVE TO

RULE ON?

>> BEING PART RAISIN, I FEEL I

MUST RECUSE MYSELF.

>> MAY I PLEASE HAVE A RAISIN.

>> GET THESE RAISINS OUT OF MY

(BLEEP)ING COURT!

>> IN THE END THE JUSTICES RULED

UNANIMOUSLY THAT IT WASN'T WORTH

THEIR TIME TO ISSUE A RULING.

BUT MARVIN HORNE VOWS TO FIGHT

ON.

>> I DECLARED WAR ON THE

U.S.D.A.

I'M NOT GOING TO GIVE YOU MY

RAISINS ANYMORE.

>> SOUNDS LIKE YOU'RE RAISIN A

LITTLE HELL.

(LAUGHTER)

BE CAREFUL, MARVIN, THE RAISIN

COUNCIL IS A RUTHLESS

ORGANIZATION.

YOU REMEMBER THESE LOVABLE GUYS?

EVER WONDER WHAT HAPPENED TO

THEM?

>> WELL, WE USED THEM ABOUT 25

YEARS AGO AND USED THEM UNTIL

THEIR VALUE AND THEIR EQUITY WAS

UP.

>> SO YOU JUST MADE THEM SING

AND DANCE FOR YEARS UPON YEARS

AND THEN OFFED THEM?

>> THE STATE MARKETING BOARD HAS

CHOSEN TO DE-EMPHASIZE THE

DANCING RAISINS.

>> AND THAT'S IT.

THESE GUYS HAD A SATURDAY

MORNING CARTOON AND THEY WHACKED

THEM LIKE THEY WERE NOBODIES.

THE TRUTH IS, MARVIN, YOU BETTER

WATCH YOUR BACK.

YOU DON'T COME TO THE RAISIN

COUNCIL, THEY COME TO YOU.

(LAUGHTER)

(SCREAMING)

>> John: INCREDIBLE WORK,

JASON.

WE'LL BE RIGHT

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