CONNOR, Maine — The Maine Drug Enforcement Agency spent Friday in a wooded area off Shean Road investigating a suspected methamphetamine manufacturing facility.
Darrell Crandall, MDEA division commander, said Friday evening that the case is connected with an incident on April 16 in which an employee of a Van Buren garbage disposal company was taken to the hospital after being exposed to fumes and smoke from a garbage bag that allegedly contained the remnants of a meth lab.
Crandall said the employee emptied an industrial Dumpster and one of the bags caught on fire. He attempted to put it out and inhaled fumes.
The Van Buren Fire Department secured the debris and MDEA was called in to process the evidence.
Crandall said that Jason Sirois, 34, of Van Buren was identified as a suspect. Agents put Sirois and some of his associates under surveillance, according to Crandall, and learned Sirois was traveling to the remote Shean Road location. Agents went into the woods on Thursday and allegedly found an active methamphetamine manufacturing operation.
On Thursday evening, as Sirois approached the lab site, MDEA agents, assisted by U.S. Border Patrol agents, took him into custody without incident.
The site was secured overnight and the MDEA lab team returned Friday afternoon to collect evidence.
A search was conducted of the wooded area, the shed of an unsuspecting property owner and Sirois’ vehicle, according to Crandall.
Sirois is charged with trafficking in methamphetamine and spent Thursday night at the Aroostook County Jail in Houlton. He made an initial appearance in court Friday where the judge set bail at $10,000 cash or $25,000 surety.
If released, Sirois must have a court-approved 24-hour custodian. He also was ordered to relinquish his passport and not leave the state.
If convicted of the Class B crime, Sirois faces up to 10 years in prison.
Crandall said Friday evening that the MDEA has sufficient evidence to charge Sirois not only with this recent activity in Connor but for the activity that caused the injuries in April in Van Buren.
The MDEA was assisted by members of the U.S. Border Patrol, Van Buren Police Department, Aroostook County Sheriff’s Department, Maine State Police, Department of Environmental Protection and the Caribou Fire Department.