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ATLANTA - Adrian Banks has been arraigned on federal charges relating to the manufacture of PCP which led to a dangerous house fire when the clandestine laboratory exploded. Coleman Warnock, a second defendant named in the indictment, is being sought by law enforcement.
“An entire neighborhood was put at risk by the explosion of this PCP lab,” said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “This type of drug also puts our entire community at risk. Thankfully, this lab is out of business and our citizens in that neighborhood are safe.”
Harry S. Sommers, the Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division commented on the case, “These volatile chemicals are venomous to the consumer and leave behind a trail of devastation and destruction by those who manufacture it, as was the case in this investigation. Because of the collective efforts of local, state and federal law enforcement, these defendants will have to face the consequences of their unlawful acts.”
“Not only were these men putting dangerous drugs on the street, they were also endangering completely innocent people by operating a PCP lab in a neighborhood,” said Georgia Bureau of Investigation Director Vernon Keenan. “We will continue to work with our local and federal partners to insure people who endanger the lives of others are held accountable.”
According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: On July 6, 2013, Fulton County Fire/Rescue responded to a citizen’s call about a house fire in a Fairburn, Ga., neighborhood. The house was destroyed after burning for almost two days. Further investigation revealed the presence of numerous barrels and canisters of chemicals suggesting the presence of a large, clandestine, PCP lab in the residence. No one other than the individuals involved in the manufacture of PCP was harmed in the fire.
On January 14, 2014, a federal grand jury returned an indictment against the defendants, Coleman Warnock, 41, of Powder Springs, Ga. and Adrian Banks, 39, of Atlanta, Ga., charging them with one count of conspiracy to manufacture PCP, four counts related to the manufacture of at least one kilogram of PCP, and one count of creating a substantial risk of harm to human life while attempting to manufacture PCP.
On January 16, 2014 Adrian Banks was arrested and has been detained. Coleman Warnock remains a fugitive. If anyone has any information on Warnock’s whereabouts please contact the DEA at (404) 893-7000.
Members of the public are reminded that the indictment only contains charges. The defendant is presumed innocent of the charges and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.
The Drug Enforcement Administration is leading the investigation of the case. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Fulton County Fire/Rescue, Fulton County Police, Fulton County Fire Department Hazmat Team, SWS Environmental Services, the Georgia State Fire Marshal’s Office, the Atlanta Fire Department, and the Atlanta Fire Department Clandestine Laboratory Enforcement Team have also been involved in the clean-up of the residence and investigation of the case.
Assistant United States Attorney Vivek Kothari is prosecuting the case.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Atlanta recommends parents and children learn about the dangers of drugs at the following web site: www.justthinktwice.com.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the home page for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division is http://www.justice.gov/usao/gan/.