Deputies find ecstasy drug lab in Plant City

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PLANT CITY, Fla. - Authorities evacuated five homes after they found a chemical drug laboratory in a nearby house.

The residents were allowed to return home late Tuesday and Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputies arrested 35-year-old Ronnie Dale Porter for possession of methylamine. He remained in jail early Wednesday.

Sheriff's spokesman Larry McKinnon told the Tampa Tribune they set a quarter-mile perimeter around the home because of potential danger after finding the drug lab. Methylamine is used to produce ecstacy or Molly, which is the drug's street name.

McKinnon says residents were allowed back inside their homes around 9 p.m. Tuesday.

The Sheriff's Office was assisted by the Hillsborough County Fire Rescue hazardous materials team and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.

Plant City is about 25 miles east of Tampa.

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