They're accused of growing an estimated $10 million worth of pot in homes in Middlesex and Monmouth counties.
Attorney General Paula Dow says Tuan Dang of Port Monmouth is charged with leading a narcotics trafficking network, which carries a mandatory life sentence.
Ngoc Bui of Old Bridge and Thu Nguyen of Monroe are each charged with maintaining a drug production facility.
A Monroe Township police officer in February detected the smell of marijuana wafting from the chimney of a home. Authorities said he found Nguyen burning unusable parts of pot plants in the fireplace.
It's not clear whether the three have hired lawyers.