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Raw Chatter

Meth labs are becoming a big problem for area law enforcement agencies.

It seems there are no boundaries.

They are springing up, literally everywhere.

They can be found in sheds, barns, inside residential dwellings or even in vehicles.

Just this past weekend and again on Monday night, local and state authorities worked many hours dismantling meth labs in both Thomson and Warrenton.

The lab in Thomson, discovered last Saturday night in a shed on residential property in a populated neighborhood was the first of its kind ever found inside the city limits.

In that case, Thomson police along with the McDuffie County Sheriff's Department and Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) worked hand-in-hand to dismantle the lab.

One man, believed by authorities to be responsible for the illegal meth lab, was taken into custody and later charged.

The night before -- again in Thomson -- police stopped a vehicle because the two occupants inside were not wearing seatbelts. Police ended up discovering that the two men were in the possession of components used for making methamphetamine in what is known as a "one-pot method."

The one-pot method has become popular for making the illegal drug that is so highly addictive. It involves mixing various chemicals together, shaking them up in a plastic bottle -- often times 20-ounce kind -- like the kind found containing soft drinks.

The most recent meth lab bust came Monday night on the outskirts of Warrenton. Again, it was discovered in a populated neighborhood.

Unlike the case in Thomson, though, local and state authorities say those involved were actually cooking the drug when the raid went down.

Again, GBI agents helped local authorities dismantle the meth lab. The meth lab bust there in Warren County was the culmination of nice law enforcement work on the part of the Warren County Sheriff's Department.

It even brought out Toombs Judicial Circuit Senior Assistant District Attorney Bill Doupe' from his home in nearby Thomson to get a first-hand look at such a drug operation.

In all three cases, a total of seven persons were arrested on drug charges -- all felonies, which likely means prison time, if they are convicted in court. Each of them was taken to the McDuffie County Law Enforcement Center in Thomson. Some of them still were jailed as of this writing.

As a reporter, I am covering more and more of these types of crime, because they are being detected more often by law enforcement authorities.

I applaud local, state and federal law enforcement agencies attempting to rid these kinds of drug operations from our communities. They are doing an exceptional job and I hope it continues.

We, as residents, should be reminded to do our part, too. Remember, if you suspect drug activity, please call your local law enforcement agency -- be it the police or the sheriff's department.

I fully believe that drugs are everybody's problem -- not just the cops. Let's help them every chance we get!

Web posted on Thursday, August 05, 2010

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