A Meth lab in the forest

Posted: 21st September 2012 by Doc in Uncategorized
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Two men appeared in U.S. District Court in Burlington Thursday to face charges they conspired to make and distribute methamphetamine in the St. Johnsbury area over the past three months.

Shawn Greenwood and Thaddeus Gordon did not enter a plea during a brief hearing before federal Magistrate John Conroy, who ordered they be held pending separate detention hearings.

The two were arrested by Vermont State Police Wednesday several days after police witnessed the two buying ingredients for making methamphetamine at a St. Johnsbury pharmacy and after police monitored a “cooperating individual” who made two controlled purchases of the drug.

Police, acting on information provided by Gordon following his arrest, sent its Clandestine Laboratory Team on Thursday to a wooded area near a cemetery north of downtown St. Johnsbury where the highly addictive drug was said to have been manufactured.

Police found an array of materials at the site commonly used to make methamphetamine, including coffee filters, lithium batteries, muriatic acid and pseudoephedrine blister packs, the affidavit said.

Vermont State Police Lt. Mike Henry told the Burlington Free Press that the public would probably not recognize the set up as a laboratory. He said the lab was off of a field near the intersection of Old Center Road and U.S. 5.

Gordon told police that he had manufactured methamphetamine 15 or 16 times between July and September and that Greenwood had assisted him, court records state.

“He purchased pseudoephedrine and was provided pseudoephedrine by Greenwood approximately 50 times for the manufacturing of methamphetamine,” the affidavit said, describing what Gordon told police.

Greenwood also agreed to speak with police after his arrest, the affidavit said. He claimed that on five occasions he purchased ingredients to make methamphetamine, but denied cooking up the drug himself.

The affidavit, however, contained a transcript of an exchange between Greenwood and the person making the controlled purchases for the police, During the exchange, Greenwood referred to himself as “Doctor Shawn” and said “Nobody makes it but me,” the affidavit said.

Both men have prior criminal records. Gordon was convicted of a drug offense in Iowa in 2006 and has a number of misdemeanor convictions in Vermont and at least three pending cases at Vermont Superior Court in Burlington, according to court documents.

Gordon also refused to cooperate with police during and after his arrest, the affidavit said.

Greenwood has three felony convictions: lewd and lascivious conduct with a child under age 16, violation of an abuse prevention order and aggravate domestic assault with a weapon, according to court documents.

Conroy, at the request of Greenwood’s court-appointed lawyer, agreed to speed up the schedule for Greenwood’s detention hearing after being told that Greenwood was being treated for a “significant health problem.”

The lawyer, Elizabeth Mann, said Greenwood’s health would be jeopardized if he failed to take his medication for longer than a 36-hour period. Under federal custody rules, people being detained cannot take any medications until their background has been checked out by federal probation officers.

The two face up to 20 years in prison if convicted of the conspiracy charges.






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