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FAYETTEVILLE, NC (AP) — The number of methamphetamine labs in North Carolina is on the rise as drug-makers scale down operations and circumvent regulations on over-the-counter ingredients.

The Fayetteville Observer reports meth busts in North Carolina had dropped to 157 in 2007 after the passage of laws regulating pseudoephedrine sales. The number of cases was back up to 235 last year.

The State Bureau of Investigation says meth labs now are using more sophisticated techniques, including operating from mobile workshops and using family and friends to buy over-the-counter ingredients.

State law limits the quantity of pseudoephedrine an individual can buy and requires stores to keep a log of who is buying cold drugs such as Sudafed.

Police say the law has helped combat meth by forcing makers to work harder to produce the drug.

Information from: The Fayetteville Observer, http://www.fayobserver.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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