Soaring demand from Hong Kong drug users and rising profits makes methamphetamines a lucrative product for smugglers, says customs.

Hong Kong’s growing appetite for methamphetamine was underlined yesterday as customs chiefs revealed a 300 percent jump in the amount of Ice seized at the Lo Wu border crossing.

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Soaring local demand and increased profits for traffickers made the drug – also known as crystal meth – a lucrative product for smugglers, said Wong Jug-tung, deputy head of the customs department’s rail and ferry command.

While the number of drug cases at Lo Wu had dropped year-on-year, the amount of Ice seized in the first eight months of this year – 13.7kg – was 291 per cent more than the 3.5kg seized in the first eight months of last year.

Hong Kong’s growing demand for the drug matches an explosion in its popularity globally, fuelled and met by production and distribution networks in Guangdong. The province is widely accepted to be one of the world’s biggest sources of both the main ingredients for crystal meth and the finished product.

Wong said there had been seven significant drug seizures at the Lo Wu crossing in the past three weeks, all of which involved Hongkongers trying to smuggle crystal meth or ketamine from the mainland into the city.

Most of the 8.2kg of seized drugs were concealed inside packs strapped to the mules’ bodies;. one 35-year-old male was discovered with a mixture of crystal meth and ketamine hidden in his underpants.

“Smugglers think they can wait until a change of shift to take advantage [of a lull in security]. But I can tell you they are wrong,” said So Siu-wah, customs’ divisional commander for Lo Wu.

Although department figures showed at 13.5 per cent year-on-year drop in the number of drug cases at Lo Wu, the quantity of the drugs involved jumped substantially.

Apart from the surge in Ice seizures, the amount of ketamine confiscated in the first eight months of this year increased 76 per cent – from 2.5kg to 4.4kg – on the same period last year.

Wong said that at peak hours, about 30 people were passing through the Lo Wu control point at any given time, so risk profiling and assessment was key.

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The easy availability of precursor materials – such as ephedrine and pseudoephedrine – combined with the entrenched organised crime landscape make Guangdong a hotbed for crystal meth manufacturing.

Much of the drugs transit through Hong Kong, where crime gangs take advantage of the city’s transport and logistics infrastructure.

Hongkongers are frequently arrested across the Asia-Pacific region for their involvement in the smuggling or manufacture of the drug. A UN report last year on the drugs trade in Indonesia pinpointed the roles of both the city and Guangdong.

“Most of the crystalline methamphetamine smuggled from China exits from Guangzhou and then transits Hong Kong … or Singapore before entering Indonesia,” read the study from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

Meanwhile, police yesterday arrested 31 people and seized drugs valued at more than HK$640,000 at two unlicensed bars in Tsim Sha Tsui. More than 500g of cocaine, 130 tablets of an unspecified Class A drug and a number of weapons were seized.

 

 

 

 

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/article/1580207/ice-seizures-lo-wu-border-crossing-triple-those-last-year-customs

 

 

Some kid shot up a dose again tonight
Pushed back by his other self
Even if you were to buy your dream
You need self-control
No one talks about hopes and dreams
All that’s there is something better, something new, a better way
The name is “Kicks Street” — the city of desire

— Lyrics from “Kicks Street” (1998), Ryo Aska

Who knows what is going through singer-songwriter Ryo Aska’s mind as he awaits his first appearance in court on drugs charges in Tokyo on Thursday. Does he have any regrets over his alleged possession of illegal substances? If he did use such substances, does he have any desire to quit? Or will his 1998 song prove to be something of a premonition?

The pop star, whose real name is Shigeaki Miyazaki, made headlines in May when he was arrested for the alleged possession and use of illicit substances. Newspapers and TV programs universally decried the horrors associated with stimulants, suggesting such drugs are eating away at the fabric of society.

Every time a celebrity such as Aska is arrested on drug charges, news outlets whip themselves into a frenzy about how dangerous such substances are. Fueled by overwrought media coverage, the public typically gets behind the police in pushing for tougher drug-related legislation.

But little, if any, light is shed on the darker side of drugs — addiction.

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“Using drugs is akin to committing suicide little by little every day,” says Yoji Miura, director of Drug Addiction Rehabilitation Center (DARC). “So many people have come and gone in my life that my heart has become numb and my tears have dried up.”

In 2013, 12,951 people were arrested in Japan on drug-related charges. Most were charged with the possession or use of stimulants broadly called methamphetamine. It’s virtually impossible to gauge from this figure how many people in the country are currently struggling with an addiction, but the health ministry says the number of arrests is just the tip of the iceberg.

Miura himself is a recovering addict. Bullied as a child for being overweight, he realized his size enabled him to fight back and he began hanging out with a rough crowd. He started sniffing glue to get high but, eventually, started using marijuana and methamphetamine. He was arrested twice before being sentenced to a year in prison.

“When you are first in prison, you think you’re never going to use drugs again because you never want to go back there,” Miura said. “By the time you are released, however, you tell yourself to make sure you’re never caught again.”

That was when Miura was first introduced to DARC.

Established in Tokyo in 1985, DARC now has 57 branches with 78 facilities all over Japan. Most members live in DARC dormitories and they generally attend two internal meetings and one external Narcotics Anonymous meeting every day. Most employees at each facility are recovering addicts, too.

“DARC is the only place addicts can be honest,” Miura said. “Once you’ve spent time in prison, you have to lie all the time: when you’re looking for a job or a place to live, or meeting new people.”

Stimulants have effectively dominated the domestic drug scene since the end of World War II. Chemist Nagayoshi Nagai first synthesized methamphetamine from ephedrine in 1893, and people would primarily use it to recover from fatigue.

Philopon, produced by Dainippon Pharmaceutical Co. (now Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma), was used as a pick-me-up during World War II for military personnel who needed to stay alert. The name is said to have originated from the Greek word philoponus, which means “he who loves labor.”

Military stocks of the methamphetamine fell into civilian hands in the aftermath of World War II, leading to widespread abuse. At its peak in 1954, police reports estimated there were 550,000 addicts in the country, with around 2 million people having tried the drug at some point in their life.

The Stimulant Control Law was enacted in 1951, banning the production, import, possession or use of methamphetamine across the board. A subsequent police crackdown meant that the number of arrests over the substance fell dramatically from 55,664 in 1954 to 271 in 1958, the lowest number in postwar history. However, stimulants are strongly addictive, and the number of arrests has remained steadily above 10,000 since 1976.

That said, drug use in Japan appears to be significantly lower than the figures reported abroad. According to statistics compiled by the health ministry in February, 0.4 percent of the Japanese population aged between 15 and 64 years old have tried stimulants at least once in their life. In the United States, 5.1 percent of the population over the age of 12 has tried meth at least once. Meanwhile, 41.9 percent of Americans have tried marijuana at least once in their life, compared to 1.2 percent of the Japanese population.

Nobuya Naruse, deputy chief at Saitama Prefectural Psychiatric Hospital, says police in Japan often brag about being extremely vigilant when it comes to drugs but show little interest in treating addicts once they’re caught.

“Japan is very good at regulating drug-related crime — one of the leading nations in the world — and depends on regulation to keep the crime rate down in terms of drug use,” Naruse says. “But that is why it has fallen way behind in terms of the treatment and recovery of addiction.”

More recently, a new problem is changing the outlook on drugs in the country: “loophole drugs.”

In addition to the Stimulant Control Law, other drug-related legislation includes the Cannabis Control Law, the Narcotics and Psychotropics Control Law and the Opium Law. The Metropolitan Police Department is, ineffectively, using the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law to deal with this new variation of drugs.

Loophole drugs typically include a mixture of chemicals that are not regulated by the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law but can have similar effects to illegal drugs such as methamphetamine and marijuana. The possession of these compounds is not strictly illegal, but Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has declared war on such law-evading drugs after a recent series of car accidents that were allegedly caused by drivers under the influence of such substances.

Naruse expressed concern over such drugs, which he said were extremely dangerous and difficult to treat because of the complex mixture of substances. Alarmingly, the latest statistics show that the number of patients at Saitama Prefectural Psychiatric Hospital who had been committed in 2013 over an addiction to loophole drugs outnumbered those who had been addicted to methamphetamine for the first time in history.

(Loophole drugs) drugs have become the most dangerous drug in Japan,” Naruse says. “They are several times more dangerous than methamphetamine and 10 times more effective than marijuana.”

The health ministry says that more than 1,370 chemicals have now been outlawed — a sharp increase from the 68 that had been banned in 2012. But every time the health ministry bans one compound, a new one finds its way onto the market, turning the whole exercise into an endless game of cat-and-mouse for authorities.

Sakae Komori, a lawyer who specializes in drug cases, says the government should speed up the process of outlawing the substances in the first place. A health ministry official said that it typically takes about three to six months to designate a drug.

Komori, however, says that simply speeding up the designation process won’t solve the problem on its own, and governments in Europe and the U.S. are battling similar difficulties.

“As there is a massive global market supporting these synthetic drugs, authorities must be prepared to engage in a prolonged war,” Komori says. “Any series of measures must first look at strengthening the capacity of analyzing and evaluating the drugs.”

With the rapid spread of synthetic drugs as well as the unchanging number of arrests over methamphetamine, authorities are expected to crack down harder.

Recidivism is also a major headache, with statistics showing that 60 percent of convictions for stimulants are repeat offenders. A 2009 survey compiled by the Justice Ministry shows that 30 percent of suspects convicted for stimulants were jailed again for a related crime.

Naruse, a 20-year veteran on treating drug addicts, says the primary focus needs to shift from penalties to treatment. Naruse says the country’s famous catch phrase, “Dame. Zettai.” (similar to the “Just Say No” campaign in the U.S. in the 1980s) simply doesn’t work anymore.

“Not everyone becomes an addict,” Naruse says. “It is the lonely, people with low self-esteem and have a strong sense of anxiety about being disliked by others who typically become addicted. Publicly attacking people such as Aska is not going to help at all. … These types of people have already lost so much along the way.”

Experts suggest there is already a trend in Western nations to shift away from harsh punishment over “victimless crimes” such as the possession and use of illegal drugs. For example, many drug courts in the U.S. are now part of the diversion program, a type of sentencing that offers offenders a chance to avoid criminal charges.

Komori, who has defended more than 1,000 drug cases, says it probably isn’t realistic to import exactly the same system in the country from the United States. Nevertheless, it’s still an overall objective worth striving for. “Correctional facilities greatly damage the relationship that the offenders have with society and I don’t think it is an appropriate punishment for drug crimes,” Komori says. “I think criminals should be treated within the community.”

In 2013, a revision of the Criminal Law introduced a new option for sentencing narcotics users that offers convicts suspended sentences and probation. Authorities hope the new procedure will allow addicts to be rehabilititated back into society and, ultimately, reduce recidivism.

However, a number of experts say there are not enough private facilities to take care of the former addicts who have spent time behind bars, expressing doubt over whether such a system can be effective in the longer term.

DARC founder Tsuneo Kondo says putting addicts in jail in the first place will not help prevent drug crimes or reduce recidivism.

A recovering addict himself, Kondo expresses frustration that no one seems to understand that addiction is a disease and that Japan’s solution to drug crimes is to put the offenders in prison and then release them, automatically expecting them to stay sober without any additional support.

“Drugs are a sign of pain,” Kondo says. “The pain could come from anywhere — from stress or work or the loss of a loved one — and anyone can become addicted. Once you become an addict, you have to deal with it for the rest of your life.”

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/2014/08/23/lifestyle/dealing-addiction-japans-drug-problem/#.U_plGyx0yzl

 

Police have seized more than 1.6 million methamphetamine pills – believed to have been produced in the same lot as those seized earlier from former drug buster cop Pol Lt Col Chamnan Poompaijit – in Bung Kan district and arrested two suspects.

The huge drug seizure was announced in a press conference on Sunday at the Royal Thai Police Office by deputy police chiefs Pol Gen Somyot Phumphanmuang and Pol Gen Pongsapat Pongcharoen and other police officers concerned.

Pol Gen Pongsapat said the success followed the seizure of 508kg of compressed marijuana by border patrol police in Bung Kan province on July 10 when two suspects were also arrested.

It was learned from the investigation of the two suspects that their gang had been involved with a major drug network believed planning to smuggle a huge quantity of methamphetamines into the country from Laos.

A sting operation was subsequently launched in which three suspects were arrested on a road in Bung Khong Long district of Bung Kan province with 1,646,000 methamphetamine pills they had smuggled from Laos.

The three suspects, who had been kept as witnesses, told police that this huge lot of amphetamines were intended to be further delivered to the South.  They said the drugs were to be delivered to two men in the Central Region.

An appointment was then made for the three to hand over the drugs to the two.  This led to the arrest of Sunthorn Sawangpheng, 32, and Suchit Noodam 54, at a petrol station on Vibhavadi Rangsit road in Wang Noi district of Ayutthaya province on Aug 22.

Pol Gen Pongsapat said the methamphetamine pills seized were found to have been produced in the same lot with the 800,000 speed pills seized from Pol Lt Col Camnan Poompaijit, a former officer of Chai Prakan police station in Chiang Mai, who was reputed to be a drug buster.

Pol Gen Somyot, the police chief-designate, said the Pol Lt Col Chamnan case showed that the drugs have a great power to lure officers reputed for their drug suppression records to waver and become greedy for money.

 

 

 

http://www.bangkokpost.com/most-recent/428475/1-6m-meth-pills-seized-in-bung-kan

 

 

You can find photos of people maimed in meth lab explosions on the Internet, but unless you have a strong stomach, you’d best not look at them. On the other hand, if you or someone you know is engaged in this illegal behavior, we recommend that you check them out. They’re not pretty. You won’t be either if your lab goes up.Pennsylvania State Police clandestine

That’s what happened — again — in Locke, a town northwest of Cortland in Cayuga County. An explosion there May 12 set a home and nearby barn on fire, killing the 47-year-old man who police say was cooking up methamphetamine. Last week, nine people ranging in age from 20 to 51 were arrested. Four are related to the victim.

Three people escaped the explosion, including a 4-year-old child. As in other instances where adults do stupid things, children are often helpless victims. In March 2013, a mother and the man prosecutors said were responsible for a meth lab explosion in Gwinnett County, Ga., were sent to prison in a plea deal to avoid a murder trial. The blast killed the woman’s three children, ages 4, 3 and 21 months.

It’s reprehensible. And it makes it all the more critical that we all become eyes, ears and noses in our own communities so we can blow the whistle on suspected meth labs. One could be operating in your neighborhood.

Once upon a time, meth production was pretty much limited to rural sites because it could easily be detected by its odor — acrid ammonia fumes are given off during the “cooking” process. But producers now use an easier method called the “shake-n-bake” or “one-pot” process, where the ingredients — acids, drain cleaner and lithium from batteries — are mixed in a plastic bottle. It takes about 90 minutes.

That means meth can be cooked up just about anywhere. Local police agencies have discovered production operations in communities ranging from Rome and Oneida to New Hartford and Oriskany Falls. And that’s just within the past year. In fact, just one year ago, New Hartford police charged two people with manufacturing meth in a mobile “shake and bake” lab concealed in a car.

Making the junk is easy, but dangerous. Aside from the effects on users — anxiety, psychotic and violent behavior, paranoia and brain damage — it’s a serious threat to innocent bystanders, especially as production makes its way into residential areas where there is a higher concentration of people. It can explode during the mixing process and the toxic chemicals used can be poisonous. That’s what happened in Georgia where three kids were killed.

So be on guard. If you witness strange behavior, frequent, short visits in and out of a house or apartment building, smell chemicals, notice large trash bags that might include chemical containers, coffee filters or plastic bottles and tubing, it could be meth production.

Don’t hesitate to call police. A bust last year in Oriskany Falls that shut down a meth lab was the direct result of an anonymous complaint and subsequent investigation. And in 2012, police found a makeshift meth lab along the banks of the Mohawk River in Rome after a citizen became suspicious of activity in that area and called police.

Err on the side of caution. Put the bums out of business.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.uticaod.com/article/20140824/OPINION/140829909/10307/OPINION/?Start=2

 

 

FARMINGTON — San Juan County Sherriff’s Deputies were involved in a high speed pursuit in the early morning hours of August 10.San_Juan_Co_woman_had_toddlers_15_pounds_of_meth_in_car_during_pursuit-syndImport-073501

Dash cam footage obtained by KOB Eyewitness News 4 shows deputies talking with 25-year-old Brittaney Escojeda as she fuels her SUV. Deputies recognized her on an outstanding warrant for felony burglary.

After more than 30 minutes, Escojeda starts the car with no warning and drives off, almost hitting a deputy with her door and with the fuel fill hose still in the car. She then led deputies on a chase, reaching speeds of 90 miles per hour. The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office called off the chase because the woman had a 1-year-old and 2-year-old unrestrained in the vehicle.

Deputies lost sight of the car until they noticed a gate broken open by Escojeda’s car. In a wrecking yard, they found the car, and Escojeda trying to hide from police. As deputies attempted to apprehend her, she got back in the vehicle and attempted to drive off.

Two deputies attempted to box her in and the woman rammed into their vehicles. A second attempt to box her in was unsuccessful as well.

The then took a sharp turn, and crashed through a chain link fence and down an embankment, where she attempted to flee on foot with her two children. The woman was apprehended and the children were released to relatives.

San Juan County Sheriff’s Deputies say a search of the vehicle involved in the chase, another vehicle and the woman’s belongings yielded more than 1.5 pounds of methamphetamine.

Escojeda was booked into San Juan County Detention Center under multiple charges and remains on a no-bond hold.

 

 

 

 

http://www.kob.com/article/stories/S3539288.shtml#.U_jyWSx0yzk

 

 

Parkersburg Methamphetamine House Demolished

Posted: 23rd August 2014 by Doc in Uncategorized

Hundreds of meth houses left to demolish in Wood County, all at the expense of the homeowners.

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It takes permits, inspection, disconnecting the utilities, and then an official okay from the state.

Once deemed a meth house, it can not be re-sold.

It has to be demolished at the owners expense.

Judy and Pete Wajda didn’t realize the home they rented was used to run a meth lab.

But wish they would have been more cautious.

They say it is a very expensive process and can’t emphasize enough how important it is to research your renters.

“If you are going to rent out people just do your research. Find out who they are and if they’ve been in any kind of trouble, because it’s happening more and more in the state of West Virginia,” says Tiffany Phillips, a clandestine drug lab technician.

“We had no idea that it was a meth place that they were cooking here,” says Judy Wajda, owner of the home at 4303 18th Avenue, which was demolished Friday.

Within five house the debris from the home was taken away in trailers to one of the four landfills in the state where contaminated property can go.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.thenewscenter.tv/home/headlines/Parkersburg-Meth-House-Demolished-272313441.html

 

 

Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV ) Authorities have released the name of a man arrested Wednesday in Twin Falls suspected of possessing child porn and meth manufacturing.

Homeland Security with help from the Twin Falls Police Department served a search warrant to Keith Joseph Banning at the Oregon Trail Campsite. According to city spokesman Josh Palmer, after serving the warrant authorities found a meth lab in the residence.

A federal case has been filed against Banning for the charge of receipt of child pornography. No word yet on charges for the meth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://newsradio1310.com/man-identified-in-child-porn-and-meth-lab-arrest/

 

 

PAINTSVILLE, Ky.A roadway had to be shutdown in Johnson County, Kentucky, after officers smelled a strong chemical odor coming from a car at safety checkpoint.

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Turns out what they smelled was an active meth lab bubbling in the rear floorboard of a car that was stopped on KY 321 near Southside Lane in Paintsville. The incident happened just before 11:30 p.m.

Shelby Barnett, 23, of Lowmansville, and her passenger, James Baldwin, 32, are charged with manufacturing methamphetamine, according to a news release from the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department. Deputies say Baldwin is facing additional charges because he “was out of jail on bond at the time” due to the fact deputies caught him weeks earlier with methamphetamine.

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Both were taken to the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center.

The meth lab was cleaned up by the Kentucky State Police DESI Unite. Traffic was routed around the scene.

 

 

 

 

http://www.wowktv.com/story/26347013/active-bubbling-meth-lab-found-during-safety-checkpoint

 

A woman found loitering in Van Eps Park after hours was arrested on drug charges Thursday night.

Madonna Bull Bear, 34, was spotted by an officer at 11:40 p.m., police spokesman Sam Clemens said. When questioned about being in the park after the 10 p.m. closing time, he said, the officer learned that Bull Bear had warrants for failure to appear, petty theft and possession of a controlled substance.

A search turned up loose pills, drug paraphernalia and a small amount of methamphetamine, Clemens said.

Bull Bear was charged with possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia.

 

 

 

http://www.argusleader.com/story/news/crime/2014/08/22/woman-caught-pills-meth-van-eps-park/14446459/

 

 

A methamphetamine lab was found in the aftermath of a fire Thursday that damaged a Binghamton apartment, and two residents were arrested by city police on drug charges.

Christopher L. Osborne and Ashley S. Ottaviani, both 23, lived in the fire-damaged second-floor apartment at 23 Baxter St., located in the city’s First Ward. Meth-related items were uncovered by investigators once the fire was put out, police said Friday.

Osborne and Ottaviani were arraigned in Binghamton City Court after being charged with felony counts of second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and unlawful manufacture of methamphetamine. They were sent to the Broome County jail.

Once authorities discovered an active meth lab in the apartment, the New York State Police Contaminated Response Team and the Binghamton Crime Scene Unit collected evidence and cleaned up the scene, police said.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Binghamton firefighters responded to the two-story residence at 8:30 a.m., after receiving a 911 call for a fire in an upstairs apartment. The two-story residence contains four apartment units, two of which were occupied.

The fire started in the kitchen of one apartment and was knocked out within about 10 minutes, firefighters said.

Seven people, including two children, escaped the fire unhurt. Three adults lived in the apartment where the fire started, police said.

 

 

http://www.pressconnects.com/story/news/crime/2014/08/22/binghamton-police-meth-arrests/14440771/

LAURELVILLE — After receiving an anonymous tip, deputies from the Hocking County Sheriff’s Interdiction Unit (SIU) searched a Laurelville home looking for a methamphetamine lab.

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Although Chelsea Danner, 25, of Pike Street, denied that methamphetamine was being manufactured in the home where her three small children were residing, she gave permission for SIU deputies to search the residence.

Deputies allegedly located two methamphetamine manufacturing reaction vessels inside a garage at the Pike Street residence, which is next door to Laurelville Police Chief Michael Berkermeier’s residence.

The vessels and components were neutralized and SIU deputies removed a liquid sample of the methamphetamine to submit to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s lab. The deputies located and recovered other components from the garage, which also were packaged for proper destruction.

Hocking County Children Services were notified and responded to the scene to assist in the removal of the three small children ranging from eight-months to four-years-old. The children were later released to the custody of an aunt.

Danner is charged with illegal manufacture of drugs, a felony of the first-degree; illegal assembly of chemicals for the manufacture of drugs, a second-degree felony; and child endangerment, a third-degree felony.

She was transported to Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail to await her arraignment in Hocking County Municipal Court.

Robert Thurston II, 31, also resides at the same address and was charged with the same offenses. According to the Hocking County Sheriff’s Office, a warrant has been issued for his arrest.

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The Laurelville Fire Department and Laurelville Police Department also responded to the scene. The fire department was on scene to assist during the neutralization of the components.

Additional charges are likely to be presented to the Hocking County Grand Jury at a later date pending the lab results from BCI.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.logandaily.com/news/laurelville-woman-arrested-after-meth-lab-components-discovered-in-garage/article_56d80a59-03be-5732-8c49-21d9334752f5.html

 

Two men and a woman were arrested Thursday on charges of making methamphetamine in their motel room, according to the North Charleston Police Department.4549347_G

Reginald Dale Butler, 25, of Calvert Street in North Charleston, Timothy M. Tinsley, 27, of Miami Street in Ladson and Ashley Nicole Wright, 19, of Ellington Drive in Goose Creek also face a count of possession with intent to distribute the drug, according to police spokesman Spencer Pryor.

Pryor said officers responded to reports of an inactive meth laboratory at the Economy Inn and Suites at 5020 Rivers Ave.

Inside Room 146, officers said they found drug paraphernalia, a little marijuana and a book bag with tubes. Sensing a strong chemical odor, the officers had the room evacuated.

Investigators later came across 4.16 grams, which is about 0.15 ounces, of meth, Pryor said.

Butler and Wright remained Friday at Charleston County’s jail, but there was no record that Tinsley had ever been booked there.

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20140822/PC16/140829760/1177/2-men-1-woman-arrested-on-meth-making-charges-at-north-charleston-motel

SPANISH FORK — Spanish Fork Police Department and Utah County’s Major Crimes Unit arrested six individuals at a residence in Spanish Fork on Thursday evening on multiple counts of drug possession. Two children were also found in the home and were released to family members.

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Police reported they served a search warrant on the home and identified four individuals who reside at the residence, Gene Dominge, 49; Gary Tyler Simpson, 31; Karlee Degraw, 25; Jessica Chappel, 30; and Chappel’s 4-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter.

Police reported that two other individuals, Trenton Stanley, 22 and Lea Adamson, 23, were visiting the residence at the time the search warrant was served.

Police reported that the search warrant allowed them to search the residence and all the individuals there. Adamson was found outside the residence attempting to leave in a vehicle. Adamson was questioned by police and told them she had a backpack inside the residence that contained drug paraphernalia.

Police reported the polka dot backpack contained three syringes and a glass methamphetamine pipe. Adamson admitted the backpack was hers and admitted that she recently used methamphetamine and marijuana.

Police report that Stanley was encountered in the living room of the residence. Stanley allegedly had a syringe in the front pocket of his pants and admitted to recently using drugs.

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Police report that Dominge and his girlfriend, Chappel, were encountered in the living room of the residence. The two identified their shared bedroom, where police reported finding two marijuana pipes with burnt residue in them. A small bag containing a green leafy substance was also located in the bedroom and field tested positive for marijuana, according to police.

Police reported they found syringes located in the bedroom of Chappel’s 4-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter. Police reported that the syringes were accessible to the two children.

Police reported that Simpson and his girlfriend, Degraw, were encountered as they were exiting a room in the southwest corner of the residence. Police reported the two identified the room as the room they had been staying in together.

Police reported they found a syringe in the room and a small coin pouch with Degraw’s ID. Inside the coin pouch they also found a small white pill, identified as hydrocodone. A controlled substance prescription report was obtained and Degraw allegedly didn’t have a prescription for the hydrocodone.

Police reported they searched a detached garage and found a Honda dirt bike that appeared to be in new condition. During the investigation, police were able to identify the owner of the motorcycle, who confirmed it had been stolen from his locked shop on his property in Spanish Fork.

Police reported they questioned Dominge, who stated that Simpson and another individual asked him at 5 a.m. on Thursday morning if they could store a motorcycle in his garage. Dominge told police he gave the keys to his locked garage to Simpson so he could put the motorcycle inside.

Police stated that after talking with individuals at the residence, they learned that Simpson and another male had been taking photos of the motorcycle and attempting to sell it.

Police reported they questioned Simpson about the motorcycle and he told police he didn’t steal the bike, but said his fingerprints would be on the motorcycle. The dirt bike is valued at approximately $7,000.

All six individuals were arrested and transported to the Utah County Jail. Police report that at the jail, all six individuals gave consent to collect blood and urine. A quick urinalysis revealed that Adamson tested positive for amphetamines and methamphetamines. Stanley tested positive for amphetamines, methamphetamines and opiates. Dominge tested positive for THC and Chappel tested positive for amphetamines, methamphetamines and THC. Simpson tested positive for amphetamines and methamphetamines. Degraw tested positive for benzodiazepines, amphetamines, THC, opiates and methamphetamines.

Dominge was booked on suspicion of possession of drug paraphernalia in a drug free zone and possession of marijuana in a drug free zone, all misdemeanors.

Chappel was booked on suspicion of possession of drug paraphernalia in a drug free zone, possession of marijuana in a drug free zone, possession of methamphetamine by consumption and two counts of child endangerment.

Simpson was booked on suspicion of possession of a stolen vehicle, possession of drug paraphernalia in a drug free zone and possession of methamphetamine by consumption.

Degraw was booked on suspicion of possession drug paraphernalia in a drug free zone, possession of THC by consumption, possession of methamphetamine by consumption and possession of a schedule III drug in a drug free zone.

Stanley was booked on suspicion of possession of drug paraphernalia in a drug free zone, possession of methamphetamine by consumption and possession of opiates by consumption.

Adamson was booked on suspicion of possession of drug paraphernalia in a drug free zone, use or possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of methamphetamine in a drug free zone and possession or use of a controlled substance.

 

 

 

 

http://www.heraldextra.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/six-people-arrested-in-spanish-fork-drug-raid/article_0674e625-c906-50c4-bc8f-8f82fb7d7b7c.html

 

 

Fresno, California – A federal grand jury returned a one-count indictment today against Mario Farias Pineda, 22, of Calistoga, charging him with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute it, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.

According to court documents, Pineda was driving northbound on California State Highway 99 when he was pulled over by Fresno County Sheriff’s deputies for talking on his cellphone. The deputies obtained permission to search his vehicle and found approximately 25 pounds of methamphetamine in a hidden compartment behind the rear passenger seat.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Michael Frye is prosecuting the case.

If convicted, Pineda faces a statutory penalty of at least 10 years and up to life in prison and a $10 million fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

 

 

 

http://imperialvalleynews.com/index.php/news/california-news/10654-twenty-five-pounds-of-methamphetamine-discovered-in-vehicle-s-hidden-compartment.html

 

 

THE number of young women facing court for serious offences as the result of taking methamphetamine is a cause for concern, according to Orange solicitor Michael Madden.

“I work in courts in Orange, Bathurst and Cowra and methamphetamine use is a big problem,” he said.

Lyndon Withdrawal Unit deputy chief executive officer Dr Juliane Allen says she and her co-workers are seeing increased amphetamine-use in young adults up to age 30.

“Not so much here at Lyndon, but definitely in the programs we are running in the community in Orange there’s more of it,” she said.

Dr Allen said the potency of a current batch of methamphtamine being sold to both recreational and regular users was taking a stronger physical and mental toll on clients, including young women.

Mr Madden said many cases involving young women also involved violence and he had seen the rapid physical and mental deterioration of some of his clients firsthand.

“The drug is one of the biggest contributing factors to the violence,” he said.

Dr Allen says the drug, which is usually smoked or snorted, gives the user an enhanced sense of confidence, which can lead to confrontational and risk-taking behaviour.

She said while Mr Madden was right to be concerned about the growing incidence of methamphetamine use, particularly in young women, Orange was just a snapshot of what was happening across the nation.

Dr Allen says people who take methamphetamine and other amphetamines at weekends on a recreational basis can turn up at work on Monday morning fully functioning.

“It only takes hours to get out of the system and the following day a user will feel tired, irritable, dehydrated and very flat,” she said.

However, Dr Allen said the long term effects were devastating to a user’s health.

“It seems to me to affect their mental health much quicker than, say, cannabis. They go downhill quickly,” Mr Madden said.

“My perspective these days is that use of the drug in Orange and other place is one of the biggest contributing factors to people being in court.”

 

 

 

 

http://www.centralwesterndaily.com.au/story/2507143/methamphetamine-crisis-young-women-courting-trouble-with-drug-use/?cs=103

 

 

Five people from North Platte have been indicted on federal charges by a Grand Jury, U.S. Attorney Deborah R. Gilg announced Thursday.

Ross Rivera, 30, and Sheena Strand, 27, of North Platte are charged with possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of a mixture containing methamphetamine on or about July 11.

Jacque Little Jamie D. Perez   Sheena Strand

Rivera and Strand were arrested that day in North Platte, when an officer pulled their car over for a fictitious license plate.

The officer contacted a man and woman as they got out of the vehicle near a house in the 1200 block of West Sixth.

The officer detected the odor of burning marijuana from the SUV, according to the police report.

Rivera and Strand admitted to smoking in the vehicle earlier in the day. A subsequent search of the SUV and personal items revealed drug paraphernalia commonly used to smoke marijuana and methamphetamine.

And, the officer reportedly discovered a large self-sealing clear bag containing approximately 80 grams of meth, with an approximate street value of $10,000.

If convicted, Rivera and Strand will each face up to 40 years imprisonment, a $5 million fine, a 4-year term of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment.

Reynaldo Perez, Jr., 34, and Jamie Perez, 31, and Jacque Little, 28, of North Platte are charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute a mixture containing methamphetamine, Gilg said.

Reynaldo Perez, JrRoss Rivera

The three were rounded up along with two other North Platte residents on July 18, all charged with meth crimes.

The Perezes are charged with distribution from February and continuing to July. Little is charged with distribution from May-July.

The Perezes were initially each charged with possession of a weapon while distributing, a second felony.

The investigation was conducted by state patrol, police and sheriff’s officers working together in a cooperative drug enforcement (CODE) task force.

The Perezes and Little each face a maximum possible penalty, if convicted, of 20 years imprisonment, a $1 million fine, three years of supervised release and a $100 special assessment.

Gilg said Thursday that the grand jury returned a total of 26 indictments charging 31 individuals across Nebraska.

Indictments are charging documents that contain one or more individual counts that are merely accusations, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty, Gilg said.

Also, Paloma Aguirre, 28, of Lexington is charged with two counts of distribution. Count I of the Indictment charges Aguirre with distribution of a mixture containing methamphetamine on or about June 20.

Count II charges Aguirre with possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of a mixture containing meth on or about June 4.

http://www.northplattebulletin.com/index.asp?show=news&action=readStory&storyID=28444&pageID=3

A Rome man was jailed Thursday after the Rome-Floyd Metro Task Force searched his room in a local hotel and turned up a variety of illegal drugs, according to Floyd County Jail records.

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According to jail records:

Rome-Floyd Metro Task Force officers arrested Travis Sentell Wimbell, 34, at around 6 p.m. in his Royal Inn motel room, 1201 Martha Berry Boulevard.

Officers said Wimbley was found with more than an ounce of suspected methamphetamine that was packaged for resale.

Wimbley also had suspected cocaine and marijuana, which he tried to flush down the toilet.

Officers also found several grinders and scales and an unidentified pill that was not in its original container.

Wimbley was charged with felony tampering with evidence, possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance, possession of cocaine, possession of methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, drug trafficking.

He was also charged with misdemeanor possession of less than an ounce of marijuana and possession of drug-related objects.

Wimbley remained jailed late Thursday without bond on a felony probation violation

 

 

 

 

http://www.northwestgeorgianews.com/rome/news/police_fire/man-arrested-on-several-drug-charges-in-local-motel-room/article_2817283e-29af-11e4-b194-0017a43b2370.html

 

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A 31-year-old man is facing charges that he forced his way into a Billings home Wednesday morning and attacked his ex-girlfriend, who, with her twin sister, fended off the man.

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The alleged burglar, James Robert Dill, was arrested later Wednesday after a foot pursuit in Laurel and made an initial court appearance Thursday on charges of felony aggravated burglary and misdemeanor partner or family member assault.

“He was allegedly under the influence of methamphetamine,” said Paul Adam, a deputy Yellowstone County attorney.

Justice of the Peace Pedro R. Hernandez agreed with a request from the prosecutor and set Dill’s bond at $35,000.

Police started investigating the case Wednesday after an officer was dispatched at about 8:30 a.m. to a disturbance at a home on the 400 block of Terry Avenue, charging documents say.

Once there, the officer spoke with the woman and her twin sister. The alleged victim was visibly upset and had scrapes on one shoulder, the officer reported.

The woman said Dill is her ex-boyfriend. He had recently become obsessed with her and started stalking her, she said.

Earlier that morning, while alone at the residence on Terry Avenue, she said she spotted Dill peeking through a back window. She checked that all the doors were locked and then called her sister.

Dill left without causing any problems, she said. But she then noticed that a screen from the front window was damaged and lying on the ground.

A few minutes later, her twin sister arrived at the home. At about the same time, Dill also appeared.

He tried unsuccessfully to enter the house through a rear sliding door and then went to a window and started prying it open with a knife, court records say.

The woman yelled at him as he opened the window and tried to keep him from coming inside.

Dill, she said, overpowered her and climbed through the window.

He then chased her to a bathroom, knocking over and breaking a large dresser in the process, records say.

Once in the bathroom, she tried to close and lock the door, but he forced it open and slammed it against her, according to prosecutors. Meanwhile, her twin sister was on the other side of the door, trying to pull Dill away.

The woman said she managed to get her cellphone to her sister, who threatened to call 911 if Dill didn’t leave. He tried to grab the phone and swore at her, before running outside and fleeing in a Maroon Chevrolet Suburban, charging documents state.

The woman said Dill carries a backpack with several knives, a gun and his “needles” for injecting himself with meth.

Investigators tracked Dill, who is on probation and has multiple felony convictions, to Laurel, where the U.S. marshals assisted in arresting him.

An officer observed that Dill appeared to be high. A sample of his urine was collected for testing.

Dill is scheduled to enter pleas to the charges in District Court on Aug. 28.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/charging-documents-twin-sisters-fend-off-home-invader-accused-of/article_aaabb98d-24b6-50a0-867f-0c1d2a1f6273.html

 

A Callahan man and woman were arrested Thursday morning on drug charges after investigators found the makings of methamphetamine labs, plus chemicals and ammunition, according to the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office.

Robson Image met_callahanmethbusts_01

Nicholas Adam Holden, 30, was arrested on charges of manufacturing or producing methamphetamine, unlawful possession of listed chemicals, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of ammunition by a felon, the Sheriff’s Office said. Patricia Robson, 41, is charged with manufacturing or producing methamphetamine and unlawful possession of listed chemicals, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Narcotics investigators executed a search warrant at 8:35 a.m. at the home in the 54000 block of Lem Turner Road, the Sheriff’s Office said. A search revealed several plastic bottles, plastic tubing and a glass pipe containing methamphetamine residue, as well as ammunition, chemicals including multiple boxes of pseudoephedrine, two cooking vessels and other equipment used to make meth, the Sheriff’s Office said.

 

 

 

 

 

http://members.jacksonville.com/news/crime/2014-08-21/story/callahan-couple-arrested-meth-bust

 

MONTGOMERY — The number of methamphetamine labs reported in Alabama has dropped significantly, according to the Alabama Drug Abuse Task Force and its report to lawmakers this year.

But some local sheriffs say meth busts are still a regular occurrence for them. Meanwhile, the same report says most of the meth in Alabama is smuggled into the state.

Barry Matson, chairman of the task force, recently told a panel of lawmakers that police were finding about 65 to 75 percent less meth labs than in previous years.

Matson later said no agency tracks the dismantling of labs or meth arrests statewide, but based on figures he has seen and law enforcement he talks to, he knows the numbers are down.

Matson said labs include both physical structures and the “one-pot” or “shake-and-bake” containers used to mix the chemicals that create meth.

He attributes the drop to legislation that put more restrictions on the purchase of cold medicines containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, key ingredients in meth.

“I don’t suspect they will come back; you have to have ephedrine to make meth and we’ve cut that off,” Matson said. “Labs are down; the one-pot cooks are down.”

But according to the task force’s 2014 report lawmakers, most of the meth in Alabama comes from outside of the state, including Mexico.

Mexican meth is up in parts of Alabama,” he said. “What we are seeing is meth, on the back of cocaine, coming in.”

The increase of the availability of methamphetamine is a direct result of the drug being brought into the state from Mexican drug trafficking organizations, the report said.

The report also shows increases in the amount of meth seized by law enforcement. The amounts of heroin and marijuana seized also increased.

Locally, several sheriffs say meth is major problem and they’re not all seeing a decrease in labs.

Lauderdale County Sheriff Ronnie Willis said there has been a steady increase in meth lab arrests in recent years: 63 in 2012; 104 in 2013; and 101 so far in 2014.

But Colbert County Sheriff Ronnie May said meth lab busts are down about 50 percent in his county to about 54 last year.

“So far this year, if it stays consistent, it will be lower than that,” May said.

Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely said meth busts keep his department “awful busy.”

“I can keep two drug officers full-time dealing just with that,” Blakely said. “It is keeping us pretty preoccupied and keeping us from focusing on other drugs.”

He said there have been at least four meth labs broken up so far this month.

“There is rarely a week that goes by that someone isn’t getting busted for trying to get meth materials or making it,” he said.

In Morgan County, Sheriff Ana Franklin said that labs may be down a bit, in part because repeat offenders are spending longer in jail. But the amount of finished product in the area is up.

“(Those drugs coming from out of state) are much higher,” Franklin said. “It seems like people have tried to stop making their own … but the meth has not (decreased).

The rehabilitation of meth addicts is key to stopping repeat offenders, Franklin said, but treatment can take two years and there aren’t many programs available.

“The only thing I have seen that really fixes the situation, the recidivism, is a long, long lock up,” she said.

 

 

 

http://www.timesdaily.com/news/local/article_6e878490-299f-11e4-9f4d-001a4bcf6878.html

 

 

Four people arrested Friday when drug agents raided a Cherokee County home looking for the alleged leader of a multistate methamphetamine operation remain behind bars, authorities said Thursday.   Pelz-Colleen

Cherokee sheriff’s spokesman Jay Baker said agents from the Cherokee Multi-Agency Narcotics Squad had been investigating the activities of James Madison Flood III for two months.

Last Thursday night, the squad’s commander was contacted by agents with the Atlanta office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

“ICE had been supporting the Taliaferro County Sheriff’s Office in a multi-agency investigation which pointed to Flood as a source of Methamphetamine in Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina,” Baker said.

Armed with that information and a search warrant, agents executed the warrant at 4 a.m. Friday at a home on Vaughn Road, in the Hickory Flat area of the county near Canton, Baker said.

“Agents noted heavy security around the house, including several security cameras and a make-shift electrified fence,” Baker said Thursday in an email.

Agents arrested Flood, 28, of Canton, for trafficking in methamphetamine, Manual Jose Arce, 25, of Canton, for trafficking in methamphetamine and possession of a firearm while in the commission of certain crimes, Daniel Badger Franklin, 46, of Mineral Springs, N.C., for possession of methamphetamine and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and Colleen Lucille Pelz, 38, of Mill Springs, N.C., for possession of methamphetamine and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Franklin-DanielFlood-JamesArce-Manual

Baker said agents recovered $7,874 in cash, four firearms and 14 ounces of methamphetamine valued at $21,000.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.ajc.com/news/news/alleged-leader-of-multistate-meth-operation-arrest/ng6gB/

 

U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested two men early Thursday morning at the San Clemente checkpoint who had methamphetamine concealed inside their car.

8-21-14-Border-Patrol-Arrests-Two-Men-on-I-5-with-780K-of-Narcotics_photo-2-500x375

The 33-year-old Mexican national driver and his 22-year-old male passenger arrived at the checkpoint at approximately 2 a.m. Agents referred them for a secondary inspection and a routine K-9 sniff of the 2008 Chrysler Sebring resulted in an alert.

Additionally, the immigration inspection revealed that the Mexican national passenger held a valid Visa, but did not possess an I-94 permit, which would allow the man to travel a distance greater than 25 miles from the U.S./Mexico international border. Due to the immigration violation and the K-9 alert, agents detained the men.

A search of the Chrysler revealed 19 vacuum-sealed packages of meth inside the gas tank and an additional 20 packages inside the vehicle’s rocker panels.

The methamphetamine weighed approximately 78.04 pounds and has an estimated street value of $780,400.

Agents arrested the two men for the possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute. In addition, the passenger faces charges for his immigration violation.

The two men and narcotics were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration. The vehicle was seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.

 

 

 

 

http://www.sanclementetimes.com/border-patrol-agents-seize-780k-worth-of-methamphetamine/

 

 

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Puerto Rico is for the first time prosecuting a suspected drug-trafficking organization on charges of distributing methamphetamine in the U.S. territory.

Sixteen suspects have been charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute meth and the date-rape drug gamma-butyrolactone, known as GBL. One of the suspects is the son of a local mayor.

An indictment released Thursday says the meth came from California and the GBL from China.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration began investigating the organization in September 2013.

 

 

 

 

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2014/08/21/us-prosecutors-accuse-alleged-puerto-rico-drug-ring-selling-methamphetamine/

 

ISIS, Mexican Drug Cartels Teaming Up

Posted: 22nd August 2014 by Doc in Uncategorized

The relationship between drug trafficking and terrorism has long existed, and can take many forms depending on the goals and needs of each party. Sometimes hybrid criminal-terrorist organizations form in which terrorist groups become involved in the drug trade to fund operations, purchase equipment, and pay foot soldiers. 29fb4bc2-438a-47a7-9b21-b4d06b9f4508

In return, they provide safe passageways for the drugs and give traffickers tips for circumventing customs and security forces. Other times a localized criminal organization or terrorist group lacks expertise, so increased contacts and business with major drug cartels helps advance the sophistication of their operation. Ultimately, though, both have logistical needs and working with or even talking to each other allows the groups to share lessons learned, important contacts to corrupt officials, and operational methods.

Thus, it’s not surprising to hear that the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) is already talking to Mexican drug cartels. Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX), a member of the House Judiciary Committee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, said as much on Newmax TV’s “America’s Forum” on Wednesday when asked if there’s any interaction between the two.

“My opinion is yes,” he replied. “There seems to be at least a talking to each other. How much? I don’t know. But … drug cartels use the same operational plan as terrorist groups do. They kill their opponents, they behead their opponents, they brag about it and they have operational control of many portions of the southern border of the United States. Mexico doesn’t. The United States doesn’t. Otherwise they wouldn’t be crossing daily with their drugs. They’re as vicious as some of these other terrorist organizations. We need to recognize them that this is an organized international crime group. And we have to deal with them as such.”

Even amid all the domestic and international crises going on at the moment, it’s important that the American people and lawmakers not give up on putting pressure on this administration to beef up border security. The crisis at the Southwest border is about more than just the illegal immigration of tens of thousands of Central Americans—it’s about national security. Criminals, violent gang members, drug cartel members, and yes, terrorists, are also coming in and will continue to do so as long as this administration puts politics and political correctness ahead of security.

 

 

 

 

 

http://townhall.com/tipsheet/leahbarkoukis/2014/08/21/isis-mexican-drug-cartels-teaming-up-n1881302

 

LUCEDALE, Mississippi — Two Moss Point women were arrested Tuesday on drug-related charges in George County after a routine traffic stop, Sheriff Dean Howell said.

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Geana D. Broadus, 37, of Pierce Road in Moss Point, was arrested after a consent to search the vehicle turned up drug paraphernalia and methamphetamine.

George County narcotics officers charged Broadus with driving with a suspended license, possession of paraphernalia and a felony possession of methamphetamine charge.

The passenger in the car, 25-year-old Laci Logan, also of Pierce Road in Moss Point, was arrested and charged with possession of paraphernalia.

The women were arrested at about 2:30 p.m. on Mt. Pleasant road in the Basin Community.

Both of the suspects were being held Wednesday in George County Regional Jail, awaiting an initial court appearance and bond hearing.

 

 

 

 

 

http://blog.gulflive.com/mississippi-press-news/2014/08/moss_point_women_arrested_in_l.html