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Agents bust moonshine operation in Roanoke County

February 02, 2012|NEWS 7 Web Staff

ROANOKE CO., Va. — The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control says they've busted a moonshine operation in Roanoke County.

Agents have charged 61-year-old James Ricky Lyle Sunnyvale Street.

According to a news release, agents seized two active copper stills, $11,000, four firearms, a large quantity of mason jars and 200 gallons of illegal liquor.

One of the copper stills was 50 gallons, and the other was 75 gallons.

The bust was the result of an 18-month investigation.

Here is the news release from the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control:

Special agents with the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) located two active stills and witnessed a man in the process of manufacturing illegal whiskey in Roanoke County on Friday, Jan. 27.

James Ricky Lyle, 61, was apprehended by ABC special agents in the 2000 block of Sunnyvale Street Friday morning. Indictments will be sought at the next meeting of the Roanoke County grand jury. The manufacture of illegal whiskey is a Class 6 felony, punishable by one to five years in prison, or up to12 months in prison and up to a $2,500 fine, either or both.

ABC agents seized two active copper stills, one 75-gallon still and one 50-gallon still. In addition, agents seized the following:

Nearly $11,000 in U.S. currency;
Four firearms; and
A large quantity of mason jars.
 Agents also found approximately 200 gallons of illegal liquor including brandy, corn whiskey, and a sugar-based whiskey with fruit added. The bust was the result of an ongoing investigation that began 18 months ago. 

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