Columbus store clerk arrested for allegedly selling alcohol to minor

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COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – A Columbus store clerk was accused of selling alcohol and nicotine products to minors.

40-year-old Mitul Patel is facing misdemeanor charges of selling alcohol and nicotine products to a person under the age of 21.

Lowndes County Sheriff Eddie Hawkins said his Narcotics STING Unit did an undercover operation to make the arrest.

An undercover 18-year-old reportedly went into Cooper’s Express on Highway 45 North and bought the products.

Patel was arrested last September for allegedly selling Tianeptine or what’s better known as Zaza after it became illegal.

“This individual has been arrested before for selling illegal products. He sold Tianeptine, which is Zaza, commonly known as your gas station heroin. These products have been controlled by the state of Mississippi, and are now controlled substances. After the law went into effect, we made a controlled purchase from the store that he previously worked at, and he was charged with selling a controlled substance,” said Hawkins.

The pills were sold in gas stations locally until the Mississippi legislature made it illegal in 2023.

Zaza is known to be highly addictive.

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Categories: Crime, Local News