A suspect in the murder of four people on a marijuana plantation in Oklahoma has been arrested in Miami Beach, authorities said.
The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation said in a Facebook post that Wuchen was taken into custody without incident by Miami Beach police on Tuesday and transferred to the Miami-Dade County Jail.
The 45-year-old Chen was held on Wednesday under a different county warrant, Miami-Dade jail records showed.
Authorities said the arrest was made “after a car tag reader marked the vehicle he was driving.”
Chen will be charged with murder and shooting with intent to kill and will be extradited to Oklahoma.
OSBI also posted a photo provided by the U.S. Army Sheriff’s Office of a man sitting on a curb with no shoes on.
Authorities said the victims (three men and one woman, all Chinese) were shot dead and “executed” on a 10-acre property west of Hennessy, about 55 miles northwest of Oklahoma City. A fifth victim, also a Chinese citizen, was taken to Oklahoma City Hospital with injuries.
The victim has not yet been publicly identified and notification of relatives is still pending “due to a severe language barrier,” police said.
Authorities had previously said they had a suspect in mind, but withheld names for now to avoid endangering others.
“The suspect was in the building for a considerable amount of time before the execution began,” OSBI said in a press release Tuesday morning. According to the investigation so far, it does not appear to be an accidental incident.”
OSBI Captain Stan Florence said the day before authorities believed the suspect knew of victims who were found dead Sunday night.
“They all know each other,” said Florence. “I don’t know if they are relatives or colleagues, but certainly all of these people knew each other well,” he said.
The Kingfisher County Sheriff’s Office initially responded to a reported hostage situation at the farm and contacted state authorities for assistance, Florence said.
“There are many things to be solved with this case,” he added. “It will take a little while to process.”
The case is being investigated as a quadruple homicide. The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Substances Control is also conducting an investigation.
The agency has been targeting criminals in recent years growing and trafficking marijuana for the black market. But National Intelligence Service spokesman Mark Woodward said Tuesday it was too soon to say that was the focus of the investigation.
“Because it’s a marijuana farm, obviously, according to Oklahoma state law, they have to get a permit from the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority and us,” Woodward said. “One of the things we’re looking at is whether it was obtained legally or fraudulently? So that will be part of our investigation.”
Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority spokeswoman Porsha Riley said there are valid licenses for businesses growing medical marijuana in the area.
None of the 14 marijuana growers in the Hennessy area responded to email inquiries from The Associated Press, and officials did not disclose which marijuana plants were operating at the shooting site.
Oklahoma voters legalized medical marijuana in 2018, and the industry quickly boomed thanks to open laws that are less restrictive than other states.
In March, voters will decide whether to legalize recreational drugs.
Maryland and Missouri approved recreational marijuana in midterm elections this month, bringing the total to 21 states that allow recreational marijuana use. Arkansas, North Dakota and South Dakota voters rejected the legalization proposal in the midterm elections.