Investigators: Man ran ecstasy 'cook lab' out of Mastic home
Federal officials say an intercepted package led them to uncover a "cook lab" inside a Mastic home that was being used to produce ecstasy.
Teams with Homeland Security Investigations, Suffolk police and other agencies descended on the Roda Drive home on Friday, with some officers in hazmat suits. Photographs released by the U.S. Attorney's Office show what appears to be a sophisticated laboratory setup inside the home with several large barrels and other equipment.
The man accused of running the lab, 44-year-old Joseph Guida, was arrested. Authorities say he's a public employee with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection.
According to court documents, the laboratory was producing enough ecstasy to be sold on the street. Guida was also allegedly growing marijuana inside the home.
Investigators say Guida lives in Queens. They say an intercepted package that was being delivered to him from China led them to open the investigation. The package contained MDMA, the substance used to make ecstasy.
Neighbors on Roda Drive in Mastic were stunned at the scene that unfolded on their normally quiet street.
"We didn't believe it. You can't believe things like that," says John Weiser, a neighbor. "We thought something was wrong when we never saw the man. He bought the house a few years ago and that's all. He used to cut the grass and nobody ever knew him."
Guida was arraigned Friday and was ordered held without bail.