Traffic stop leads to meth bust

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What started as a traffic violation ended with two arrests and a meth bust in Knox County, Illinois.

A Knox County sheriff’s deputy reportedly stopped a pickup truck at about 9:45 p.m. Thanksgiving night, November 22, 2012.  When the deputy ran the identities of the driver and passenger, he discovered an active Mercer County arrest warrant for the passenger, Kevin Smith of Abingdon. 

Smith was arrested.  

The deputy then reportedly noticed an odor coming from the passenger compartment of the truck.  The deputy reportedly found a tank with a blue valve, commonly used for anhydrous ammonia, inside the truck.  Anhydrous ammonia is a primary ingredient in methamphetamine.  The deputy found another container that contained a white residue in the bed of the truck.

That’s when the driver and passenger were both arrested.   They are each charged with possession of meth manufacturing material, participation in the production of 100 to 400 grams of meth, possession of anhydrous ammonia and transportation of anhydrous ammonia.

The driver, 35-year-old Craig Fox of Wataga, Illinois, was also charged with criminal damage to government property (the roadway).  The passenger, 52-year-old Kevin Smith of Abingdon, Illinois faces additional charges in connection with the Mercer County arrest warrant.

Both men were held in the Knox County Jail.