03/11/10 — Man arrested in Wallace for heroin

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Man arrested in Wallace for heroin

By Steve Herring
Published in News on March 11, 2010 1:46 PM

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Anthony Jamar James

WALLACE -- A self-confessed gang member is in the Duplin County jail under a $1,001,000 bond following his arrest Monday on numerous charges of trafficking in heroin.

Sheriff Blake Wallace said Anthony Jamar James, 25, of Wilmington entered the county for the sole purpose of establishing a client base for the drug and was arrested following an investigation by the Duplin County Sheriff's Office Narcotics Division.

"We had information through the course of an ongoing investigation that this guy was coming to the Wallace area for the sole purpose of establishing a client base in Duplin County," Wallace said. "He admitted that to us."

James was charged with three felony counts of trafficking in opium or heroin and one felony count each of maintaining a vehicle, dwelling or place for controlled substance and possession with intent to manufacture, sale and deliver heroin.

Wallace said the drug was packaged similar to powdered headache medicine pouches. The drug-filled packages are called brindles.

James had 92 brindles of the drug for a total weight of about 25 grams. The state threshold to be charged with trafficking is 4 grams.

"He well exceeded this amount," Wallace said.

The drugs, believed to have come from Mexico, were stashed in a sock that James had secreted in the crotch of his pants.

The brindles were stamped with "dead-eye" on them denoting which gang the heroin came from, Wallace said.

The sheriff said James is a member of the Bloods gang from New Hanover County.

The street value of the drugs was put at $1,850.

Deputies were waiting for James and stopped him just outside of the Wallace town limits.

"We had the information and were waiting on him," Wallace said. "We took him down without incident. I have been in law enforcement for 20 years and it is the first case I can recall of heroin in Duplin County."

Wallace said that other veteran members of the Sheriff's Office could not remember any earlier cases either.

"We feel fortunate we caught it before it hit the streets," Wallace said. 'The guy said it was a first attempt at trying to establish clients (in Duplin County). I am not naive enough to believe that they won't try something else.

"Once we approached him and identified ourselves he gave up the drugs. He is an admitted gang member and said that they were trying to get in the areas to distribute the drugs."

The price per brindle varies from $20 to $50 each, Wallace said.

"These gangs are a business and they run like a business and they are trying to expand here," he said.