Law Officials Bust One Of The Largest Meth Labs In Recent History - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

04/16/05

Law Officials Bust One Of The Largest Meth Labs In Recent History

A month-long investigation came to an end early Saturday morning, when law enforcement entered Coastal Toner and Service in D'Iberville, and discovered what they say is one of the biggest meth labs in recent history.

"We found about 20 pounds of what we call waste materials, and the ratio was about 4 to 1 waste material to product so we figure with the waste materials here he probably had made 4 to 5 pounds of methamphetamine, which is a significant amount that's about 30-40 thousand dollars worth of methamphetamine, street value probably about one hundred thousand dollars," said Captain Pat Pope of the Coastal Narcotics Enforcement Team.

A Hazmat crew out of Mobile was called in to help dismantle the lab.

During that time, authorities found a couple of high-tech cameras and a monitor, which they say the suspects were using as a surveillance system.

"We don't often see this level of sophistication as far as counter surveillance but apparently he was really security conscious. He wanted to make sure if the police came here, he would know about it," said Pope.

The two suspects, Milton Murphy, the owner of Coastal Toner and Service, and James Sexton the third were arrested at the scene and face a variety of drug-related charges.

Harrison County Sheriff George Payne says officers were able to make the arrests much sooner than expected, thanks to suspicious neighbors.

"We were able to make this case from the citizen involvement from people calling us and letting us know suspicious activity had been going on in the area. People visiting with us and telling us that there might be a problem here, so we started investigation. This had the capacity from the residue that's been found here to be a super lab," said Harrison County Sheriff George Payne.

Authorities say this isn't the suspects' first run in with the law.

The two were already out on bond after an arrest in February of last year for possession of ingredients to make methamphetamine.

By Karla Redditte

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