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Historic drug bust takes more than $130K worth off the streets

The Citrus County Sheriff has a message for drug dealers: "We will see you soon!”
Credit: Citrus County Sheriff's Office

INVERNESS, Fla. — It was the largest fentanyl and meth bust Citrus County had ever seen.

The Citrus County Sheriff’s Office said it seized 1.6 pounds of meth, 1.6 ounces of powdered fentanyl and much more during a traffic stop Thursday. The total street value of all the drugs they took was $130,931.00.

Deputies said they pulled over a red Chevrolet Camaro driven by three-time convicted felon Ricky Lee Pope, 56. Pope was detained for driving with a suspended license, according to the sheriff’s office. When the deputy searched Pope, there was drug paraphernalia on him, the sheriff’s office added.

A K-9 deputy was then called to the scene. K-9 Odie alerted to the presence of drugs at the trunk of the car.

Deputies said Justin Derrik Miner Pope, 33, was in the passenger seat of the car. He had a lunch box with alprazolam and methamphetamine inside of it, law enforcement said.

"This is the largest seizure of fentanyl and methamphetamine in Citrus County's history. The amount of fentanyl seized could have killed hundreds of people," said Sheriff Prendergast. "My office is committed to keeping our citizens safe from these deadly narcotics. As I have said before, if you deal drugs in Citrus County, I am coming after you with my team. I am grateful for
the outstanding law enforcement work by everyone involved in this case and their relentlessness to arrest drug dealers like Ricky Pope so they are no longer a threat to our community."

Sheriff Prendergast also had a warning for drug dealers: “Attention drug dealers, the third quarter of Operation Coin Toss has begun. We will see you soon!”

RELATED: Sheriff: 137 pounds of meth, 11 pounds of heroin seized in drug trafficking bust

RELATED: Australian police find $200 million worth of meth hidden in sriracha bottles

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