MADRAS, Ore. -

A Madras man suspected of being a major methamphetamine dealer was arrested Wednesday afternoon at a Madras gas station, followed by a search of his car and raid on his apartment that turned up nearly nine ounces of the drug worth about $13,000 on the street, authorities said.

Detectives with the Central Oregon Drug Enforcement Team contacted Adam Kory Merritt, 29, as he sat in his car at the Towne Pump gas station in Madras, said Lt. Ken Mannix.

Merritt had been the subject of a “short-term” CODE Team investigation into the alleged “trafficking of large quantities of methamphetamine throughout the tri-county region, more specifically in the Jefferson County area,” Mannix said in a news release.

Merritt was taken into custody without incident, Mannix said. During a search of his car, a green 1996 Honda Accord, detectives found about 1.8 ounces of meth, a scale and a loaded handgun concealed under the driver’s seat, which by state law Merritt – an ex-convict – is not allowed to possess, Mannix said.

About two hours after Merritt’s arrest, CODE Team detectives, aided by Jefferson County sheriff’s deputies, executed a search warrant at his apartment, at 37 NE Eighth Street, No. 2, Mannix said.

That search yielded about seven ounces of methamphetamine, packaging material, another gun, cash and evidence of meth sales and distribution, the lieutenant said.

Merritt was taken to the Jefferson County Jail, where he remained held Thursday on drug possession, distribution and manufacturing charges, as well as a felon in possession of a firearm.