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MDEA busts meth lab in Portage Lake

PORTAGE LAKE, Maine — Officers arrested two people Tuesday afternoon for allegedly manufacturing methamphetamine in a Portage Lake home with a 2-year-old child, in what the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency reported is the 27th meth lab discovered this year.

Agents charged Cleveland Long, 42, and Amber Pulcifer, 33, with Class A aggravated unlawful operation of a meth lab and Class B, unlawful trafficking in methamphetamine, according to the MDEA. The more serious Class A felony is punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

MDEA agents, along with members of the Maine State Police troopers and Aroostook County Sheriff’s Office, executed a search warrant at the West Road home Tuesday.

Long had been under investigation for drug crimes “for some time” and the agency recently gathered enough evidence for a judge to approve a search warrant, according to an MDEA press release issued Wednesday.

Authorities found a “large amount of evidence related to the making of methamphetamine” along with a small amount of finished methamphetamine that was intended for sale, according the release.

Additional members of the MDEA’s meth lab enforcement team responded with special equipment and worked for several hours to collect evidence and dispose of hazardous materials.Members of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection and the Portage Lake Fire Department also assisted in the incident.

According to the release, a 2-year-old child also was home at the time of the search, which triggered an elevated charge and led to the child being turned over to state Child Protective Services. It was not immediately clear if either or both of the suspects were the child’s parents.

Long already was on bail for allegedly operating after his driver’s license was suspended and for drug possession. He faces an additional charge of violating conditions of release. Both Long and Pulcifer were taken to the Aroostook County Jail where they remained as of Wednesday with bail set for each at $2,000 cash.

The MDEA said that this was the 27th meth lab incident that the agency responded to this year. Last year, the agency responded to 58 incidents.

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