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Three men face charges for meth possession in Carlton County

The men were arrested after officers found 1 pound of methamphetamine near the vehicle's engine in a concealed compartment, according to the criminal complaints.

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CARLTON — Three men were arrested on Friday, June 3, after police found 1 pound of methamphetamine concealed in a compartment near the engine of their vehicle, according to the criminal complaints.

Mark Arthur Locken
Mark Arthur Locken
Contributed / Carlton County Jail

Mark Arthur Locken, 43, of Hoyt Lakes, was arrested and charged with first-degree drug possession for possessing 50 grams or more of cocaine or methamphetamine. Dean Wayne Olds, 56, of Aurora, and Donald Richard LaBlanc, 63, of Britt, were arrested on the same charges.

The charges come with a mandatory minimum sentence of 65 months in prison, but not greater than 40 years, or a $1 million fine or both.

Dean Wayne Olds
Dean Wayne Olds
Contributed / Carlton County Jail

The Carlton County Sheriff's Office received a tip from the Pine County Sheriff's Office that a vehicle transporting a controlled substance would be traveling through the county to Aurora at around 1 p.m. Friday, according to the criminal complaints.

After identifying the vehicle, a sheriff's deputy observed the driver traveling over the speed limit and changing lanes without signaling along Interstate 35, the complaints said. The deputy pulled the vehicle over and noticed a smell of marijuana coming from the vehicle.

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When the deputy asked about the odor, Locken told the officer that it was"the devil's lettuce," the complaint said. He also told the officer he does not have a prescription for marijuana.

Donald Richard LaBlanc
Donald Richard LaBlanc
Contributed / Carlton County Jail

After the passengers were asked to exit the vehicle, the deputy noticed a homemade marijuana pipe on the floor of where LaBlanc had been sitting, according to the criminal complaints.

This led to law enforcement to search the entire vehicle.

A concealed compartment near the vehicle's engine contained a package that field tested positive for methamphetamine and weighed 1 pound, the criminal complaints said.

The men will have hearings on the charges in the next couple of weeks, according to online court records.

MORE FROM DYLAN SHERMAN:
Motions by the prosecution and defense to increase or decrease the bail, respectively, were denied by the judge.

Dylan covers the local governments of Cloquet and Carlton County, as well as the Esko and Wrenshall school boards for the Cloquet Pine Journal.
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