Meth Lab Discovered In Little Valley

LITTLE VALLEY – A large-scale methamphetamine manufacturing operation was discovered Monday on a Little Valley property.

Investigators with the Cattaraugus County Sheriff’s Office discovered the lab at 102 South Court St. and took the sole occupant, 32-year-old Lucas S. Leclerc, into custody.

The Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force contacted the New York State Police Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team for assistance in hazardous material cleanup, as well as evidence collection. The Little Valley Fire Department and Cattaraugus County Emergency Services also assisted.

As a result of the search, investigators seized numerous pieces of lab equipment, precursors, reagents, solvents and surveillance equipment. They also seized 14.8 ounces of methamphetamine.

DEA Buffalo will adopt the case and prosecute federally, according to police.

Leclerc is being held in Cattaraugus County Jail awaiting arraignment in Buffalo Federal Court. The investigation is continuing, and more arrests are expected, police said.

Only recently was another methamphetamine operation discovered after a counterfeit money investigation led police to a 519 Forest Ave. residence in Jamestown.

Inside, investigators with the Jamestown Police found a “one pot” methamphetamine operation – on a much smaller scale than the Little Valley incident – where the drug was being manufactured in a plastic two-liter bottle as opposed to several heated containers.

Salena Hare, 22, and Kirby Driggers, 30, both of Jamestown, were charged with third-degree manufacture of methamphetamine, as well as first-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument for their use of counterfeit bills.

On May 25, Christopher L. Swanson, 43, of Lakewood was arrested after the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office and the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force discovered methamphetamine production at his 8378 Schultz Drive residence in Westfield.

Neighbors had reported that there were subjects staying in a residence at that location and that there was a strange odor coming from inside.

Swanson was charged with criminal possession of precursors of methamphetamine, seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of marijuana.