'This is one of the largest seizures in the state': Over $2M worth of fentanyl seized in NC drug bust

NEWS NOW: NHC Sheriff talks about huge fentanyl bust

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Detectives with the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office Gang Task Force arrested three people and seized over $2 million worth of the deadly opioid fentanyl during a raid at a Wilmington home earlier this week.

"As far as we can tell this is one of the largest seizures in the state," said NHC Sheriff Ed McMahon.

Nearly 13 pounds of fentanyl with an estimated street value of over $2 million was found inside a home in the 1400 block of Kornegay Avenue in the Creekwood North community.

Marijuana, heroin, and drug paraphernalia were also found in the home.

According to sheriff's office officials, detectives received tips that heroin was being sold at the home

During the next several months, undercover detectives made several controlled purchases of heroin from the home and on Wednesday executed a search warrant at the residence.

Authorities said the mixture of fentanyl seized could produce hundreds of thousands of bags for sale.

"What we seem to be finding is the dealers are putting more of the fentanyl and less of the heroin and we believe that's one of the main reasons we're having people overdosing and dying on this stuff," McMahon said.

According to McMahon, fentanyl can be deadly in trace amounts.

"When you think about this poison - this fentanyl - one grain can kill you," McMahon explained. "Our detectives are having to gear up with all this safety equipment before we go in. Once they get in, if we find something - any kind of drugs that we think may be fentanyl - we stop, we have to get our CSI team to come in and we test that in a lab now under special conditions. So we do all that, it makes it that much more dangerous for our local law enforcement officers."

Three people were taken into custody during the raid.

Wednesday's bust is easily the largest fentanyl seizure in New Hanover County history. Earlier this year, the sheriff's office confiscated 3.3 pounds of the opioid from a home on Flint Drive in Wilmington. That raid was the previous record.

William Roderick McIntire, 50, was charged with:

  • Possession of Marijuana up to one half ounce
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance
  • Maintaining dwelling for a controlled substance
  • Manufacture a schedule II controlled substance
  • Possess of heroin
  • Conspire to traffic opium/heroin (2 counts)
  • Trafficking opium/heroin (2 counts)
  • Possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver a schedule II controlled substance
  • Possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver heroin

Charles Alexis Batts, 46, was charged with:

  • Possession of a controlled substance in jail
  • Possess of heroin
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Maintaining dwelling for a controlled substance
  • Possession of marijuana
  • Possession of marijuana paraphernalia
  • Conspire to traffic opium/heroin (2 counts)
  • Possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver a schedule II controlled substance
  • Manufacture a schedule II controlled substance
  • Trafficking in opium/heroin (2 counts)

Wanda Gray Moore, 51, was charged with:

  • Maintaining a dwelling for a controlled substance
  • Possess of heroin
  • Possession of Marijuana up to one half ounce
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Conspire to traffic opium/heroin (2 counts)
  • Trafficking in opium/heroin (2 counts)
  • Possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver a schedule II controlled substance
  • Manufacture a schedule II controlled substance

Batts and Moore both received $2 million bonds, while McIntire was given a $5 million bond.

"We are going to continue enforcing this to the best of our ability and we are going to be arresting and putting the dealers in jail and prison for as long as we can keep them there," said McMahon while encouraging anyone who is addicted to seek help.

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