A yearlong investigation into the possible sale of synthetic drugs at a Fulton convenience store resulted in an arrest last week.
Nagmaldin Ali Almogari was taken into custody on Thursday after law enforcement officials with three agencies executed a search warrant at Kwik Sak convenience store at 416 East Main Street, Fulton. Almogari is an employee of the store.
Officials with the Itawamba County Sheriff’s Department, Fulton Police Department, and the North Mississippi Narcotics Unit arrested Almogari on four counts of the sale of a controlled substance within 1,500 feet of a church and possession of a synthetic cannabinoid — spice — with intent to distribute.
Justice Court Judge John Bishop set Almogari’s bond at $125,000.
According to a press release from the Itawamba County Sheriff’s Department, agents recovered vials of synthetic cannabinoid from inside the store. Investigators also seized $12,249 in cash.
"We've been working on this for about a year," Itawamba County Sheriff Chris Dickinson told The Times. "It is difficult and complicated when it comes to dealing with vials for vapes."
Dickinson said the investigation began by determining the vials being sold inside the store included Schedule 1 synthetic narcotics. The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) defines Schedule 1 narcotics as drugs, chemicals or other substances with no accepted medicinal use and high potential for abuse.
Examples of Schedule 1 narcotics are heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxy methamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote as listed by the DEA.
"After we determined they did not have medicinal use, undercover buys were made after we were accepted into their Instagram group," Dickinson said.
According to the sheriff, Almogari was a member of an Instagram page called The Kwik Sak Gang. When an individual wanted to purchase a vial of the narcotic, he or she posted a reference to “honey bees.”
The sheriff recommended that parents check their children’s social media accounts to see if they were a part of Almogari’s group.
"Hopefully they can get ahead of the problem," he said. "Maybe it will save them some headache and heartache down the road."
Sheriff Chris Dickinson said the investigation is ongoing, and more arrests are possible.