Opp pair arrested for meth lab

Published 2:17 am Saturday, September 3, 2011

Drug Task Force agents ended a six-month investigation Thursday with the arrest of an Opp couple suspected of operating a meth lab from their West Street home.

DTF Comm-ander Mark Odom said Joseph Marvin Shell, 34, and Candace A. Fannin, 33, were arrested.

“After explaining to the couple why they had come to their home, agents saw ite-ms used in the manufacture of methamphetamine in plain view and obtained a search warrant,” Odom said. “And we located meth oil, pseudoephedrine and other chemicals, as well as some marijuana.”

Odom said the couple was producing the meth using the one-pot method.

“This was a non-descript house, like any other on the block,” he said. “And you wouldn’t know there’s a meth lab inside until you got information that there was meth being made at the location, which was the case here.

“Used to, the neighbor would call and say there’s a funny smell coming from next door, but that’s not happening anymore with this one-pot method,” he said. “Now agents have to be very diligent in their investigative process to fully uncover the location of these type labs.

“Which is why closing down this meth lab took us longer than it normally does,” he said. “It was just a matter of making sure we did things by the book. Agent (Greg) Jackson has been working on this case since the middle of February and did an outstanding job leading the investigation.”

Odom went on to say, “I want to make sure the citizens know that no complaint or bit of information that is provided to us goes undocumented. Sometimes, it just takes us longer than we would like to get all the pieces of the puzzle and make an arrest. Our DTF has never cut corners to make a case. As long as I am here, we never will.”

DTF agents were assisted by the Opp Police Department, Covington County Sheriff’s Department and the district attorney’s office.

Shell is facing charges of first degree manufacturing, trafficking of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia and booked into the Covington Count Jail under a $770,000 bond; however, he was also charged with violation of probation, which has no bond.

Fannin was held on a $220,000 bond on charges of second-degree manufacturing, possession of drug paraphernalia and second-degree possession of marijuana.

She, too, is being held in the county jail without bond on a violation of probation warrant.