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Joint long-term meth investigation in Henry nets ninth arrest

By Kathy Jefcoats

A native Mexican living in Cartersville remains in the Henry County Jail without bond after his arrest for trafficking 10 pounds of methamphetamine with an estimated street value of $240,000.

The arrest of Saul Reyes Sanchez, 43, comes after a 10-month undercover investigation worked by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Laurens County Sheriff's Office and U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, said GBI spokeswoman Vicki Metz-Vickery.

"This is a significant amount of methamphetamine for this area," she said. "The GBI quantifies the estimated street value at $240,000 based on cost per ounce."

Sanchez, of Briarwood Lane, is a native of Beljucus, Mexico. He listed his occupation on jail booking records as "drug dealer." Sanchez was represented during his first appearance in Henry Magistrate Court by court-appointed attorney Philip Ruppert. Ruppert waived a probable cause hearing and bond for that charge has to be set by a Superior Court judge.

Metz-Vickery said Sanchez was arrested in Stockbridge Thursday around 6 p.m. by agents with the GBI Macon Regional Drug Enforcement Office, assisted by the Henry police narcotics unit.

"This was the result of a 10-month undercover operation into the sale of methamphetamine," she said. "It originated in Laurens County and expanded into Treutlen, Bibb, Henry, Butts and Clayton counties. It was very much a joint investigation, with all these agencies working together."

Sanchez was the ninth person to be arrested during this investigation which continues, said Metz-Vickery.