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Man in custody, Mesa police seize hundreds of illegal fireworks

Mesa Fireworks Seizure 1
Mesa Fireworks Seizure 2
Posted at 1:27 PM, Jun 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-30 21:55:30-04

MESA, AZ — Mesa police say in the last two weeks, they have seized large amounts of illegal fireworks at two different locations in Mesa.

The first search warrant was executed at a liquor and smoke shop near Country Club Drive and Brown Road on June 24. Police say they received an anonymous tip of the store selling illegal fireworks, which prompted the investigation. Nearly 130 prohibited fireworks worth more than $4,000 were seized from the store according to police, and charges are pending against the store's owner.

The second seizure took place Wednesday at a location near Mesa Drive and Brown Road. On top of the seizure of over 1,600 packages of fireworks valued at more than $7,700, police also say they recovered two AR-15 rifles and arrested a man they say has a violent criminal history. George Baber, 40, is facing multiple charges after the seizure.

Mesa authorities add they will be out in full force on July 4 enforcing fireworks laws. They say using prohibited fireworks are dangerous and pose a fire and injury hazard.