LYNCH – A large quantity of crack cocaine and cash were confiscated following the search of a Harlan County residence on Friday, January 28.

Operation UNITE charged 23-year-old Abdulkadir Mahmed Areys of Knoxville, Tennessee, with one count of first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

“There will definitely be additional arrests related to this investigation,” said Dan Smoot, law enforcement director for UNITE.

Areys has been under investigation by UNITE for approximately three weeks, Smoot said. Although the exact source of the crack cocaine has not been determined, “it is being brought into Kentucky from another state.”

Detectives were able to arrange for several crack cocaine purchases during the investigation, which enabled UNITE to obtain a search warrant for the residence on Church Street in Lynch where Areys was staying.

About 4 p.m. Friday UNITE detectives, accompanied by officers from the Lynch and Cumberland Police Departments and the Harlan County Sheriff’s Office, went to the home to serve the search warrant.

Upon seeing the officers Areys ran to the bathroom and attempted to flush the cocaine down the toilet, but police were able to recover approximately 30 grams. “That’s a whole lot of crack cocaine,” Smoot said, adding officers also recovered more than $2,400 in cash.

In this region of Kentucky, Smoot explained, crack cocaine is generally sold by the half-gram for $50 – enough to keep a user high an entire day.

Areys was lodged in the Harlan County Detention Center.