A northeast Minnesota man is in custody after authorities conducting a search warrant found a drug that has only been found in the state three times in the past decade.
The search of a home in Rice Lake, a small community north of Duluth, was carried out Feb. 21 by the St. Louis County Sheriff's Office and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.
Inside the residence was Dimethyltryptamine, a psycheldelic drug similar to LSD that is known as "DMT."
The man accused to manufacturing the drug, using Amazonian plants and other products "readily found on the internet" that can be highly flammable, has been identified as Donald Alan Rankin.
The BCA Crime Lab found several mason jars filled with brown liquid and a clear top layer, and subsequent testing of the liquid determined that it was in fact DMT.
It's only the third known instance of DMT in Minnesota over the last decade. Because its presence in Minnesota is so unusual, investigators have been working with Los Angeles Police Department, who more commonly deals with the drug in California.
Ranking was formally charged Wednesday morning in St. Louis County District Court with first-degree sale/manufacture of a controlled substance. Bail has been set at $75,000.
Drug seizures up in 2018
The Minnesota Department of Public Safety announced on Wednesday drug seizures were on the rise in Minnesota.
Last year, drug task force teams combined to seize 1,145 pounds of methamphetamine, which is a new record for the 11th consecutive year, and up from 624.5 pounds in 2017.
The release says most of the meth is coming from Mexican drug trafficking organizations.
Marijuana seizures were also on the rise, with the state seeing a 115 percent increase from 2017 to 2018.
Cocaine seizures increased for a third straight year, though there was a fall in crack, prescription pill and heroin seizures.