By DEUCE NIVEN
Community complaints and tips are credited with leading Columbus County Sheriff’s Office Vice-Narcotics unit investigators to a large stash of drugs, weapons and cash on Peacock Road east of Tabor City.
Two Tabor City men were arrested after investigators executed a search warrant at 24344 Peacock Road on Jan. 6, a CCSO news release on Jan. 10 said.
Rico Antonio Smith, 37, of Peacock Road, Tabor City, and Forest Dean Bielinski, 28, of Shug Norris Road, Tabor City, was each charged with three counts of trafficking opiates by possession; Possession with intent to manufacture sell and deliver cocaine, heroin, MDMA, and a schedule 3 controlled substance; delivery of marijuana; and resisting law enforcement, arrested Jan. 6 in the 24000 block of Peacock Road, reports by Deputy Michael Kellihan said.
Smith was also charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, maintaining a place for a controlled substance, possession with intent to manufacture sell and deliver marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Both were jailed at the Columbus County Detention Center, Smith under secured bonds totaling $255,000, Bielinski with bail set at $225,000.
A residence on the property and outbuildings were searched.
“Investigators located and seized four handguns, three long guns, packaging materials, a digital scale, a bulletproof vest, a gas mask, over $7,000 in cash, and a large sum of narcotics,” the news release said.
Seized narcotics, with an estimated street value of $20,000, included 5.2 grams of cocaine, 9.9 grams of fentanyl, 2.1 grams of heroin, 82.2 grams of marijuana, 52 dosage units of Oxycodone, 8 dosage units of Buprenorphine, 18 strips of Suboxone, and a dose of MDMA (also known as Ecstasy, Molly.
Look for more on this story in the next Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.