After a year of investigations, the Lee County Sheriff's Department produced 48 indictments and search warrants for crimes that mostly involved selling methamphetamine. The sheriff said that the drug had become prevalent in the area because of regulations on opioids. He explained that drug dealers were switching to methamphetamine because people could make the substance with household ingredients. This aspect made it impossible to cut off the drug supply.
He said that methamphetamine had played a role in many of the department's recent arrests. Knowledge of how to make the substance was spreading, and now he described the drug as being everywhere.
The department's latest effort to curtail drug activity resulted in 27 arrests. Law enforcement continues to look for more suspects. The court will need several months to schedule trial dates for all 27 people and process them. The prosecutor said that each defendant's criminal history would influence their sentences. People charged with first offenses might serve a sentence of seven months to a year. People previously convicted of drug possession and distribution could receive sentences that ranged from five to ten years.
When drug charges have been issued, the situation can be intimidating and confusing. The representation of an attorney could help a defendant understand the terminology being used in court. Legal representation could also make the defendant aware of the available options. If the evidence appears weak, an attorney might challenge its association with the defendant and succeed in getting charges reduced or dropped. An attorney might negotiate with the prosecutor for a lesser penalty such as the completion of a drug awareness program.
Source: WCYB, "Lee County rounds up drug suspects, one injured in car crash", Thomas Gray, Sept. 22, 2017