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Pipe bombs found hidden in pickup truck

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Staff Writer

Two pipe bombs were found June 1 near Mammoth Spring, hidden in a truck confiscated during an April drug bust.

Fulton County sheriff's deputy Paul Martin said he received an anonymous tip May 31 that pipe bombs were located in the late model Dodge Dakota behind the passenger's side airbag cover.

"I'm glad we got the call because we were fixing to move the truck," said Martin.

According to 16th Judicial District Drug Task Force Chief Scott Russell, the Arkansas Bomb Squad was called from Little Rock and two pipe bombs, found behind the passenger side air bag cover, were defused.

Russell said the truck was parked at Fulton County deputy Carroll Traw's residence after the April 12 drug bust because it was convenient. He said the drug task force had planned to move the truck into storage.

The owner of the truck, Morris Allen Jones, 26, of Mammoth Spring was arrested along with Thomas Bundy Noakes, 29, of Mammoth Spring after officers found methamphetamine, components of a meth lab and pipe bombs during a routine traffic stop at the Mammoth Spring post office.

No additional state charges are expected against Noakes and Jones, but the two may face federal charges, Russell said.

Russell said in the original bust the ATF opened a case against Jones and Noakes, but federal charges have not been filed with the U.S. Attorney's Office. The agent in charge of the case, Alton Cambre, recently transferred to Louisiana and the new case manager will make the determination if federal charges will be filed.

"Sometimes it can take forever with the feds. Sometimes we get indictments in two months, some have taken as long as two years," he said.

Russell said the bombs were similar to the ones confiscated in the original bust. "We don't believe anyone planted these bombs after the fact," he said.

Martin said the bombs had standard fuses and were not connected to the ignition system. He said the pipe bombs still could have hurt someone driving the vehicle.

"Anything can happen. If someone driving that truck had been in a wreck or hit something real hard, you just don't know what might have happened with those homemade bombs," he said.

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