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Missoula man charged in drug bust

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A 28-year-old Missoula man appeared Monday in Justice Court after he was arrested Friday on a variety of felony drug charges.

Derek Banks was charged with two counts of criminal possession of dangerous drugs with intent to distribute, criminal possession of dangerous drugs and criminal possession of property subject to forfeiture after his arrest at an East Broadway motel.

City police initially developed information that three people allegedly were selling drugs out of a room at Holiday Inn Express.

When they went to a room to investigate, they learned that Banks, Emily Ross and another person had previously had occupied by the room but had checked out, according to court records. However, officers found some evidence that drugs had been present in the room.

Working with an informant, officers then arranged to buy some methamphetamine from Banks and Ross, records state.

After that arrangement was made, police, working with the suspects' names, determined that they'd likely checked into the Thunderbird Motel on Friday, records state. After obtaining a search warrant, several city officers converged on the motel room and arrested Banks and Ross.

During a search of the motel room, police found about 20 grams of methamphetamine divided into 11 packages, $726, and a zipper bag containing a small plastic spoon and a precision scale.

More than three grams of marijuana, which appeared to be packaged for sale, also was located.

Other items located included two larger bags of marijuana, several pieces of marijuana paraphernalia and oxycodone pills.

Ross, 24, who was charged with possession of dangerous drugs, posted $5,000 bond and was released Saturday.

Charges could be filed against a third person, according to police Sgt. Mike Brady.

Banks is being held in the Missoula County Detention Facility on $10,000 bail. He also is being held on a $50,000 fugitive warrant.

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