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Meth maker gets 12-year sentence

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By Rich Bauer, Managing Editor

Just one month after being charged with several methamphetamine offenses, a rural Vandalia man has accepted a 12-year sentence.
Charles L. Nelson, 60, accepted the lengthy prison term in pleading guilty to a charge of possessing 900 grams or more of a substance containing methamphetamine.
As a result of the plea bargain with the office of Fayette County State’s Attorney Joshua Morrison, four other charges were dismissed.
Those charges, filed on June 5, include: participation in the manufacture of 400 grams or more of methamphetamine; participation in the manufacture of 900 grams or more of methamphetamine; unlawful disposal of methamphetamine-manufacturing waste, including “smoker” bottles, meth bottles, Coleman fuel cans, ether cans and plastic tubing; and unlawful possession of methamphetamine-manufacturing materials, including coffee filters, ammonium nitrate, liquid fire, lye, salt and lithium batteries.
The methamphetamine manufacture and possession charges are Class X felonies. The maximum penalty for the manufacture charges is 60 years in prison, and the maximum on the possession charge is 50 years.
The charges alleging possession of meth-making materials and disposal of meth-manufacture waste are Class 2 felonies punishable by up to seven years in prison, or 14 years in cases where the defendant is eligible for extended terms.
The charges allege that Nelson was involved in methamphetamine manufacture between May 26 and June 4 of this year.
Nelson was given credit for 36 days served in the Fayette County Jail.
He was represented by court-appointed attorney Matthew Riedle of Vandalia.