GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – The Greenville County Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Enforcement Unit (DEU) said two people are behind bars for making dangerous drugs out of their home while using a machine to do it.
Investigators said Latravic Bigby and Vannaren Hor used a desktop type pill press to make tablet forms of heroin, fentanyl, and methamphetamine. This was happening at their home in the 100 block of North Oak Forest Drive in the Berea area.
Bart McEntire, the Commander of the Greenville County (DEU), said the tablets were being sold across the Greenville area. He tells 7News the department had been following this case for awhile until they were recently able to arrest Bigby away from the home.
McEntire said when they got to the home, they arrested Hor. Officers also found powder, residue, two guns (one which was stolen), and other things. They also found more than 500 finished pills and money.
The pills tested for heroin, fentanyl, and meth. McEntire said the operation was so dangerous they had to call in the SC National Guard Civil Response Team to help. This was due to what investigators said was a health risk concern.
McEntire said his team is concerned about what they call, “garage manufacturers and garage chemists”.
“Persons who with little to no background in any avenue of chemistry or science and with no regard to human life,” McEntire said.
He said the desktop pill press seized, is capable of producing 3,000 to 5,000 tablets an hour.
Officers said due to the spread of drugs and meth, their office is taking this very seriously.
“The spread of opioid based drugs and methamphetamine has accelerated at an already deadly epidemic in Greenville County,” said Sheriff Johnny Mack Brown. “Dangerous synthetics such as fentanyl and methamphetamine, simply put, will kill unwitting individuals. It’s critical that we get unregistered pill presses off the street and hold these bad characters responsible for pushing these illegal drugs,” Sheriff Brown added.
“They’re basically running pill press machines out of tablets of very…high drugs that have the potential to kill people. We take that very serious,” said McEntire.
Investigators said Bigby and Hor now face one count of Trafficking in Methamphetamine 200g-400g and Trafficking Heroin over 28 grams. They also add both could face a minimum of 10 years in prison for each of the charges.