A drug bust in Fernandina led to a seizure of more than 100 pounds of marijuana, worth about $200,000 and drug paraphernalia seized.
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Jonathan Balyeat, 51, is in jail and charged with trafficking marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession with intent to sell.
According to a police report, officers spotted Balyeat meet with someone at a gas station on South Fletcher Avenue Monday.
They followed him to a home on Forrest Dr., where police said he was storing the marijuana in a shed on the property.
According to the report, the homeowner told police she didn’t know Balyeat. Another individual there said he did give permission to the suspect to store personal belongings, but nothing illegal.
Neighbors in the area told Action News Jax’s Robert Grant that the homeowners had nothing to do with the bust.
We tried knocking on their door, but no one answered.
“It’s kind of scary because I mean, this is very quiet living here,” one neighbor said.
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Nassau Sheriff Bill Leeper said more arrests are possible in the case, which was investigated by Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, Drug Enforcement Administration and Florida Highway Patrol.
“We’re starting to see it more and more often. I know there is medical marijuana out there, but it doesn’t seem to be as potent as people like,” Leeper said about the bust. “If you’re addicted to drugs, we want you to get help. If you’re selling illegal drugs, you’re going to jail.”
Leeper said drugs can often lead to gun and gang violence.
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Police said the drugs were stored in vacuum-sealed bags in five black Adidas duffle bags, a cardboard box, two plastic bins and sandwich bags ready to sell.
The drugs will now be sent to an FDLE lab to test for potency and if they are laced with other drugs like fentanyl.
“You never know what you’re getting off the street. You don’t know what it’s laced with. It could kill you if you’re not careful,” Leeper said.
The bust is still under investigation and Leeper said more arrests are possible.
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