Auburn man arrested in methamphetamine raid

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AUBURN — A man was arrested on a charge of manufacturing methamphetamine Thursday when police and drug agents raided a home on Minot Avenue.

Eric Merrill, 29, was charged with trafficking in meth after police searched his home at 1510 Minot Ave. where they said they found evidence of a clandestine drug laboratory.

The Thursday afternoon raid by Auburn police and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency was the culmination of an investigation that began earlier in the year.

In February, another man was arrested after police and drug agents raided an apartment on Omer Street in Lewiston. In that bust, 35-year-old James K. Ludlow was charged with possession of methamphetamine.

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Police said it was evidence gathered during that raid that led them to the home on Minot Avenue on Thursday afternoon.

“That pretty well wraps up that investigation,” said MDEA Supervisor Gerry Baril.

When agents went to Merrill’s home — one was dressed in a protective hazardous materials suit — at about noon, Baril and others first notified local businesses of the raid. They included Coleman’s Collision Center and John Murphy Homes, both near the scene of the bust.

Police said Merrill was at his home when the officers arrived. He was arrested and taken to the Androscoggin County Jail.

Police and agents spent hours at the scene collecting evidence. They were joined by officials from the Environmental Protection Agency, who went in after police had cleared to make sure any hazardous materials were disposed of properly.

Police did not say what specific items were seized from Merrill’s home. He remained jailed Thursday night.

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