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Siler City man among those guilty of running meth lab at Campbell University

Posted Thursday, July 23, 2009

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Buies Creek, NC - Three North Carolina men have pleaded guilty to charges stemming from the operation of a methamphetamine lab in a vacant dorm room at Campbell University.

Harnett County sheriff's deputies discovered the lab in October after responding to a fire alarm at the school, according to a news release from U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding.

The deputies charged Steven Michael Cole, 29, of Siler City; Victor Wesley Evans Jr., 33, of Benson; and Wesley Craig Hickman, 26, of Dunn. Cole and Evans pleaded guilty Monday to conspiring to distribute and possessing with the intent to distribute more than 500 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine, the release said. Hickman pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the possession of a list chemical with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine.

According to the release, investigators responded to Burgess House on Oct. 27 in response to a fire alarm.

Once there, a deputy smelled ammonia and saw several containers in an upstairs bathroom.

Narcotics officers confirmed the setup was a working drug lab and matched prints on some of the items to Cole.

According to investigators, Cole and Hickman had traveled to Fayetteville the day before to buy pseudoephedrine - a key ingredient for methamphetamine production - for Evans.

The men had agreed that Evans would give Cole a half-gram of the drug for each box of pills provided. But the fire alarm sounded while the drug was being cooked.

Investigators said that the men tried to remove the drug before authorities arrived and that Hickman let them use his truck to do so.

Evans and Cole face up to life in prison followed by 10 years of supervised release and a $4 million fine. Hickman faces up to 20 years in prison followed by three years of supervised release and a $1 million fine.

The three will be sentenced in mid-October.


The Burgess House is owned by the university but hasn't been used as a residence hall since spring 2004.

None of three men is associated with Campbell University.

 
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Siler City man among those guilty of running meth lab at Campbell University
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