Franklin County drug task force officers and police arrested five people last week in two separate drug raids in the city of Pacific.

“We’re taking this stuff seriously,” Pacific Police Chief Matt Mansell said of the raids and arrests.

“Since I’ve been chief, we’ve had the largest number of drug arrests than in the previous 15 years,” Mansell said

He said the department has added two drug dogs to assist in drug investigations and interdictions.

Those have resulted in the seizure of “pounds” of illegal drugs, the chief said.

Mansell said one of his detectives is attached to the task force and was responsible for obtaining information that led to one of the two drug raids last week.

That raid last Tuesday, Aug. 27, was at a home in the 1900 block of Tulip Drive, where a 48-year-old man and two women, ages 37 and 32, were taken into custody. Their names were not released because they have not been charged yet with a crime.

Detective Cpl. Scott Briggs of the Franklin County Narcotics Enforcement Unit said officers followed up on the information provided by the Pacific detective by checking the electronic prescription drug database and found that two of the suspects had purchased medication containing pseudoephedrine — the vital ingredient needed to make meth — the night before in St. Louis County.

Officers went to the Tulip Drive home about noon and during their investigation found that the suspects had just finished making and using meth. Briggs said investigators found evidence of a meth lab on the property.

On Thursday, officers obtained information through the database that other individuals had purchased pseudoephedrine in St. Louis County.

Briggs said the task force had “dealt with” one of the suspects in 2011 when he lived in the Labadie area. They traced him to a new address in Pacific, then obtained information that he was at a home in the 1200 block of Pinewood.

Officers went there to question him and found three one-pot meth labs in different stages of operation, Briggs said.

Two men, ages 39 and 54, were arrested in that investigation, Briggs said. They were not identified pending lab analysis of evidence and a decision on issuing charges.

Mansell said his department will continue to assist the task force in sending a message to drug users and dealers.

“We will catch you,” Mansell remarked.