The Jasper County prosecutor's office has charged a local man with turning a gas station near DeMotte into an illicit drug market.
Muhammed R. Khan, 36, of Crown Point, is named in felony counts alleging he was dealing synthetic drugs or drug look-alikes and engaging in corrupt business influence. Khan also faces one misdemeanor count of drug dealing.
No trial date has yet been set for Khan.
Rensselaer Police Chief Jeffrey Phillips said this week his department, the Jasper County Sheriff's Office and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration took part in an undercover drug buy Monday at the Marathon gas station just west of the Interstate 65 interchange.
Phillips said officers who raided the station found $40,000 worth of Spice, a drug called Mali or Molley, bath salts and drug paraphernalia inside the store. He identified Khan as the station manager.
Spice is a street name for a synthetic marijuana. Bath salts contain drugs related to amphetamines, and Mali is a synthetic psychoactive drug, according Phillips and the White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy website.
Phillips said newly enacted state laws permit authorities to revoke the station's retail business license if there is a drug conviction. He said the police investigation will continue.